Can Personality Impact the Management of Networks?

Student Classification


Faculty Mentor

Dr. David Hachen



Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2019


College students with larger networks tend to be extroverted, and consequently have lesser depressive symptoms. Despite this, there is a dearth of research on how extroversion levels can impact the management of a network. Can the mismanagement of a network cause depression, and can extroversion, or lack thereof, play a significant role? The current study sought to address this question with 3 hypotheses; (1) can extroversion predict network size, (2) can depression scores predict extroversion and network size, and (3) can a variation in network size due to extroversion attribute to depression scores. For this study, researchers utilized the Net Health data set, which included behavioral and network data from a large (n = 714) majority Caucasian (65.6%) sample of college students from a private religious Midwestern university. A simple, and multivariate linear regression were conducted to test these hypotheses. Residuals were used to assess the variation of network size due to extroversion. There was a positive significant effect found between the residual term and extroversion (b = 0.972, p = < .001), which supported the hypotheses. This research suggests that limiting a social network may benefit a college student. For college students who are introverts, there is an apparent need for them to not overemphasize friendships, as this may create additional stress which could hinder academic performance.

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