Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire

Angela Hegarty 

BSc [Hons] Applied Psychology

I am a student of the BSc Applied Psychology programme at IADT. During my time at IADT I have found a particular interest in Educational and Child Psychology. I hope to apply my knowledge that I have gained during my course at IADT to my future career and postgraduate study.

Project Description

A selfie can be defined as a “self-portrait that a person takes using a smartphone or webcam” (Oxford Dictionaries, 2013). With image based social media platforms e.g. Instagram seeing an influx in the use of selfies in recent times, its effect on self-efficacy has been the topic of increasing numbers of research, particularly in young adults, with 90% reporting social media use every day. Due to the growth in selfie-related behaviors, selfie-editing has increased in popularity. The goal of this research project is to evaluate the impact of selfie editing and gender on young adults’ self-efficacy. It has been reported that research on the effect of selfie-editing on young adults is sparse, therefore this study aims to contribute to this research.

Project Objectives

Selfies are commonplace in our ever-emerging online world. Although the literature surrounding their effect on young adults is lacking. This study aimed to investigate whether selfie-manipulation and gender had an effect on young adults’ self-efficacy. A between groups experimental design was conducted among 109 participants, 23 males and 86 females, between the ages of 18 and 29 years. A two-way analysis of variance was utilized to analyze data collected. Participants were asked whether they had used selfie-manipulation software to edit their selfies in the past (yes/no). The “New General Self-Efficacy Scale” was employed to determine self-efficacy among participants.

Project Outcomes

The findings did not report a significant difference in self-efficacy based on selfie-manipulation. Furthermore, no significant difference was found in self-efficacy based on gender, as well as no difference on self-efficacy was found based on gender and selfie-manipulation. These results are particularly prevalent in our ever-emerging online world and may offer peace of mind to those exploring the effects of selfie-manipulation on individuals. This study adds to the growing body of research examining the effects of the modern technological world that many of us interact with on a daily basis. This study is important as it fills a gap in the current research offered relating to selfie-manipulation and the effects it may or may not have on self-efficacy.