This study examines the moderating effects of both emotional intelligence and social intelligence (social awareness and social information processing) on the relationship between peer victimization and internet addiction, and on the association between peer victimization and psychological distress. We collected data from a national proportionately-stratified random sample of 6233 fourth-grade primary school students in Taiwan and constructed hierarchical linear regression models to test the research hypotheses. The results show that youth who have experienced more peer victimization are at a higher risk of internet addiction and psychological distress than youth who have experienced less peer victimization. In this study, emotional intelligence was negatively associated with internet addiction, but it did not significantly buffer the impact of victimization on internet addiction. Social awareness was negatively associated with internet addiction, but it exacerbated the negative impact of peer victimization on internet addiction. On the other hand, emotional intelligence was negatively associated with psychological distress and buffered the negative impact of victimization on mental health. Social information processing was negatively associated with psychological distress, but it amplified the negative impact of peer victimization on mental health among Taiwanese adolescents. The research implications of these findings are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies