Huron University College is researching the psychological impact Instagram and other social media sites have on students.
Associate Professor of Psychology Dr. Tara Dumas says the study found that people behave differently depending on the amount of “likes” they get on their content.
According to the study, some students participate in “normative behaviour”, which includes the use of filters and hashtags on photos.
Dunmas says social media can lead others to “deceptive behaviour” such as manipulating their content.
“Those likes are bought or the likes are based on a picture of them that does not really look like them,” Dumas said. “What does that do for their well being?”
According to the study, students that were valued by their peers were more likely to participate in normative behaviours.
“We definitely want to do future research on [other visual presentation] applications such as Snapchat to be able to generalize our findings more broadly,” Dumas said.
Dumas says past research focused on the amount of time students spent on social media sites rather than observing the value they place on peer feedback.