Date of Award

Fall 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Psychology: Clinical




Both positive and negative effects of communication technology use have been studied with contradictory findings. Some research has shown that engagement with this technology can reduce face-to-face interaction, which threatens subjective well-being. Other studies have shown that the right combination of personality traits and the amount and type of technology use can enhance well-being, to some degree. I examined the relationship between communication technology use and subjective well-being and whether participants sought face-to-face interaction when not engaged with this technology. Participants in the experimental group reduced their use of communication technology two days per week for three hours each day over a four-week period, while participants in the control group continued their regular use of communication technology. Communication technology use was defined as time engaged with any of the following devices: mobile phone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer, television, movie screen, and headphones. Participants who reduced communication technology use reported increased levels of subjective well-being. While previous research on communication technology and well-being largely focused on the negative and positive effects of engagement, the current study focused on the positive effects of disengagement with this technology. The current study did not direct participants in the experimental group to engage in alternatives to communication technology.