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 Format: MS WORD ::   Chapters: 1-5 ::   Pages: 64 ::   Attributes: Questionnaire, Data Analysis ::   5,868 people found this useful

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Early 21st century marked the emergence and growth of social networking sites in the whole world. Since then these sites have become a major part of people’s lives, specially the lives of the youth. Many teenagers are using social media, especially Facebook, to build relationships, connect with the world, share and gain knowledge and information, build stronger personalities and have better social lives (Boyd, 2007). Mitchell (2002) claimed that social networking sites are used by youngsters to get engaged in romantic and casual online relationships. It has been observed by the changing behavior of the people that social media has many negative repercussions on people. Social networking sites help people to make social comparisons which increase the psychological distress of individuals and as a result lower the overall level of self-esteem (Chen & Lee, 2013). Many observers and researchers believe that due to increase in the usage of social networking sites, people have become the victims of lower self-esteem and self-growth.

A consumptive behavior is a part of people’s daily lives including in developing countries, as in Indonesia. This consumptive behavior influences people’s lifestyles especially in developing countries since the people are the consumers of the goods produced by developed countries (Setiono, Psikologi, & Soegijapranata, 2014). For the last three to four decades, studies on consumption have been growing really fast (Jhaveri & Anantharaman, 2016). A varied point of views and explanation make consumptive behavior become a complex phenomenon, which is hard to explain and unpredictable (Sharma & Jha, 2017).

The existence of internet gives opportunities for individual to use social media such as email, Twitter, and Facebook to communicate with people without have to do the face-to-face meeting (Gruzd, Wellman, & Takhteyev, 2011). The amount of internet users that increase in Nigeria is also followed by the increased amount of social media users which reached 79 million in 2016, which has rose to 106 million users. The active social media users via mobile has also increase from 66 million to 92 million users in 2017. One of the social media which is growing fast is Instagram. Unlike others social media, Instagram provides a number of special filters that allow the user to change the resolutions and color of the photos before they posting it (Sheldon & Bryant, 2016).

When people get to know each other through social media, individuals can control the information shared, so that people tend to share positive things and one of them is conspicuous consumption of goods and services (Thoumrungroje, 2014). Conspicuous consumption behavior will encourage people to spend money luxuriously, both status-based and to show off the goods and services (Taylor & Strutton, 2016). It was found that media social can increase people’s self-esteem (Gonzales & Hancock, 2011).

When self esteem increases will make users feel good about themselves (Fotis, 2015). They have a higher tendency to lose their self-control and can act based on conspicuous behavior. A definitive relationship between self-esteem and consumption has been identified in literature (Khan & Dhar, 2006). Self-esteem has a direct impact on human behavior. This increased self-esteem is mainly caused by a belief that conspicuous consumption can increase someone’s happiness, which make them more satisfied (Truong & McColl, 2011).

Conspicuous consumption is considered as an important point on costumer’s behavior (Trigg, 2011). Research conducted by Amonrat Thoumtungroje (2014) on social networks or otherwise known as social media can affect conspicuous consumption through EWOM. Differences in research conducted by Song (2016) contribute to the literature about conspicuous and brand. The brand used for overcome shyness and increase self esteem. Researchs states (Nizar et al, 2011; Troung,2011; Caitlin,2016) that social media and self esteem have a significant influence on conspicuous consumption. Social media as a tools in helping to increase self esteem. Emotion that effect the relatioship between social media and brand can increase self esteem that allow consumers to do conspicuous consumption.

 It can also be said that conspicuous behavior is an act of spending money for luxury things, which are not important, to impress others (Heugel, 2015). Conspicuous consumption and behavior have been examined in many countries around the world (Taylor & Strutton, 2016). Research conducted by Souiden et.al (2011) is to examine the relationship between conspicuous consumption of branded accessories and consumer desire to reflect social status and self-esteem.

If conspicuous consumption keeps happening, people’s desire to show off will increase as well. The advent of social media has changed the landscape of traditional conspicuous consumption theory, since all consumption now has the possibility to be conspicuous consumption based on how individuals use social media (Yenicioglu & Suerdem, 2015). A social media usage can increase too much self-esteem.

With the advent of the Internet over a decade ago came the introduction of a new form of communication referred to as social networking. On-line social networking sites, such as Facebook, Myspace, and Twitter, have become increasingly popular and almost an integral part of everyday life, especially for college students. Launched in 2004, Facebook is now the predominant social networking site with over one billion active users, and it is estimated that this number will increase significantly as Facebook is introduced in developing countries. Approximately ninety percent of college students have a Facebook account, and it is estimated that the average amount of time spent on this social networking site ranges from thirty minutes to over two hours on a daily basis. With all this time spent on a networking site that allows users to create a profile, upload pictures, and share information about the self with others, one must wonder what the implications are on an individual’s feelings of self-worth and self-esteem.

Research has indicated that more time spent on Facebook is related to low self-esteem. It appears that the more time that is spent online leads to a decline in face-to-face communication with family and peers which can lead to feelings of loneliness and depression.

There are a lot of socio cultural factors that have been shown to impact selfesteem such as the media, TV, advertising, music videos, magazines, socio-economic status, personality, mental health and support from family members (Clay, Vignoles, & Dittmar, 2005; Veselska et al., 2010). These factors can lead to appearance related social comparison which can result in worse psychological functioning (Lindner, Tantleff-Dunn, & Jentsch, 2012). Research has shown that individuals with high self-esteem show more downward social comparison compared to those with low self-esteem (Cramer, Song, & Drent, 2016). With the emergence of social media sites social comparison has become a lot easier for adolescents, with approximately 90% of them active online day and night (Woods & Scott, 2016). Research has shown that adolescents both show downward social comparison and upward social comparison (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014). Upward social comparison refers to those who compare themselves to others who seem to be in a better place in life and downward social comparison is when an individual compares himself to others that seem worse off (Mahler, Kulik, Gerrard, & Gibbons, 2010).

In recent years the use of social media accounts such as Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram etc. has increased dramatically (Andreassen, Pallesen, & Griffiths, 2017; Sanfilippo, 2015). It has been stated that one third of the world´s population is active on social media (Hawi & Samaha, 2016). Social media use and its increase has created a new research platform and it has become more evident that there is need to further examine how social media can influence various aspects of life, including adolescents’ self-esteem. Up to date, studies on the relationship between social media and self-esteem have revealed that those who spend more time on social media report lower levels of self-esteem (Vogel, Rose, Okdie, Eckles, & Franz, 2015).

Research on addictive social media use has shown it to be correlated with self-esteem (Andreassen et al., 2017). It has been shown that those who spend more time on social media show upward social comparison which can have a negative effect on adolescents (Lewallen & Behm-Morawitz, 2016). One of the factors that can be impacted are adolescents´ selfesteem (Vogel et al., 2015). Those who are described as addictive to social media report lower levels of self-esteem according to Hawi & Samaha (2016). Andreassen (2015) argued that those who show addictive social media behavior tend to spend much off their time thinking about social media and are constantly trying to find ways to free up more time for social media use. Addiction to social media is however not the same thing as excessive use like logging out right before going to sleep or logging onto social media accounts first thing in the morning (Andreassen, 2015).

It has been reported that social media use is rapidly increasing, in particular spending more time on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter (Seo, Houston, Knight, Kennedy, & Inglish, 2014). With this increase in social media use adolescents tend to evaluate their own selfworth and popularity based on how many friends they have or how many likes they get on their profile pictures on Facebook (Cookingham & Ryan, 2015). Facebook has been found to be one of the most popular social media sites (Seo et al., 2014). When looking at Facebook posts the first thing most individuals look to is how many likes a profile picture gets. A positive feedback on Facebook should boost levels of self-esteem (Burrow & Rainone, 2016). However, when evaluating that fact it must be taken into consideration that it may be offering a false sense of security (Best, Manktelow, & Taylor, 2014). When looking at the difference in Facebook activity between those who report high levels of self-esteem compared to those who report lower levels, their activity online is different. Those with higher levels of selfesteem seem to be more active in posting new pictures or status updates whereas those with lower levels of self-esteem are not comfortable sharing information about themselves in that setting (Tazghini & Siedlecki, 2013). Furthermore, research has also shown that spending a great amount of time on social media can increase the risk for both depression and social isolation (Best et al., 2014). In addition, research has shown that girls are more likely to show physical appearance comparison and with the pressure of posting photos online they are more active on sites such as Instagram and Facebook. Girls tend to show more social comparison online which are self-relevant and can be threating to their self-worth, which can lead to higher levels of depression and lower levels of self-esteem (Nesi & Prinstein, 2015).

 Although a lot of research has shown social media to have a negative effect on the psychological functioning of adolescents there are studies that show social media to have positive effect on adolescents (Hamm et al., 2014; Sanfilippo, 2015). Social media sites have been used to encourage healthy lifestyles such as healthy eating and exercise and it has been shown to be effective (Hamm et al., 2014). Another thing that has been looked at in relation to the positive effect social media can have on self-esteem is the relationship between personality traits and social media use. That concluded that there was a positive relationship between a few personality traits, such as extraversion, and comments that were posted on their social media (Wang, Jackson, Zhang, & Su, 2012). In addition is has been shown that social media can boost the self-esteem of those who struggle with social anxiety. That is thought to be because communication through social media is much easier for them rather than communicating face to face (Joinson, 2004).

It has been shown that parents play a big role in the development of their children and adolescents. Research regarding self-esteem has looked into if adolescents have support from their parents (Bean, Bush, McKenry, & Wilson, 2003). Parental support refers to the sense of acceptance, warmth, affection and nurturance that adolescents feel they get from their parents (Barber, Stolz, Olsen, Collins, & Burchinal, 2005). Adolescents that receive high levels of parental support and behavior monitoring have better health and are more adequate than adolescents that don´t receive the same parenting style (Bean et al., 2003). Perceived parental support has also been shown to reduce depressive symptoms in adolescence. In addition perceived parental support can function as a buffer for individuals with pessimistic attributional style (Rueger & Malecki, 2011). A longitudinal study conducted by BoudreaultBouchard et al. (2013) investigated the relationship between parental emotional support and adolescents´ self-esteem. Their results indicated that adolescents that receive high levels of parental emotional support have higher self-esteem than others (Boudreault-Bouchard et al., 2013).


The study came about as a concern to the increasing number of depressed individuals which one of it factor is self esteem. Many researchers have come to the conclusion that social media has a great influence on the self esteem of individuals and as such they act differently. Amongst the various research works on social media and its influence on self esteem, no research has talked about the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development.

Therefore, the study seeks to examine the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development using Lagos State as a case study.


The main aim and objective of the study is to examine the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development with Lagos State as a case study. Other objectives of this study include:

  1. To determine the relationship social media has on self esteem and personality development.
  2. To examine the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development.
  3. to proffer solution to the effect social media on self esteem and personality development.

1. what is the relationship social media has on self esteem and personality development?

2. what is the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development?

3. what is the solution to the effect social media on self esteem and personality development?

  1. HO: there is no significant effect of social media on self esteem and personality development.
  2. H1: there is a significant effect of social media on self esteem and personality development.

Social media has a very strong impact on the self-esteem of individuals. People use these social networking sites for information, communication and building and maintain of relationships. As a result the self-esteem of such people gets negatively affected.

Over the past couple of years, social media metrics has had a huge impact on our sense of self-worth. The amount of followers, likes, or views we get affects us so much that it lets us define our value and self-worth. Nowadays, people correlate someone having a low amount of social media metrics to meaning that the person isn’t as important, or as interesting. Whereas someone having a high amount of social media metrics has the opposite meaning. They’re seen as interesting and important. And based on that, people automatically assume that a person who has a high number of followers is more liked than a person who has a few followers. Therefore, with that view, we let social media metrics define our sense of self-worth.

We are constantly trying to get thousands of followers in the hopes that it will improve our sense of self-worth. All of this can lead to anxiety and depression because social media metrics have become so valuable that it can have a huge affect on someone who isn’t happy about the results of their metrics. On the other hand, if someone has really good social media metrics it can lead to narcissism because they can start thinking that they’re better than those who have less, and will have a higher sense of self-worth.

The study will help individuals and the society at large to build a strong wall on their self esteem and personality development and allow nothing demean or determine their worth and personality. It will also go a long way in curbing anxiety and depression especially among the youths who are in constant use of the social media not to see it as a determinant factor to define their lives and progression.

Finally, the social media can be used for lots of positivity’s like, adverts, meeting business partners, personality development and others.


The study will cover the effect of social media on self esteem and personality development in Lagos State.

  1. Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
  2. Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

Social media

 Social media websites involves the use of the internet to connect users with their friends, family and acquaintances. These websites allow you to share photos, videos and information, organise events, chat, and play online games.

Social Media has been defined as websites which allow profile creation and visibility of relationships between users (Boyd & Ellison, 2008); web-based applications which provide functionality for sharing, relationships, group, conversation and profiles (Kietzmann et al., 2011). Social media has been referred to as “social media sites” (Diga & Kelleher, 2009), or a set of information technologies which facilitate interactions and networking (Kapoor et al., 2017; Oestreicher-Singer & Zalmanson, 2013). However, there appears to be a broad agreement that Web2.0 technologies played a significant role in the development and adoption of social media. Another definition of social media refers to “Internet-based applications built on Web 2.0, while Web 2.0 refers to a concept as well as a platform for harnessing collective intelligence” (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013 p. 246). Social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, provide people with a pervasive network connectivity (Asur & Huberman, 2010).

Self esteem

Rosenberg (1965), one of the pioneers in this domain, stated that selfesteem refers to an individual overall positive evaluation to the self. He added, that high self-esteem consists of an individual respecting himself and considering himself worthy. In a similar vein, Sedikides and Gress (2003) stated that self-esteem refers to individual’s perception or subjective appraisal of one’s own self-worth, one’s feelings of self-respect and self-confidence and the extent to which the individual holds positive or negative views about self. Self-esteem is related to personal beliefs about skills, abilities, and social relationships.

 Self-esteem is also defined as a global barometer of self-evaluation involving cognitive appraisals about general self-worth and affective experiences of the self that are linked to these global appraisals (Murphy, Stosny and Morrel, 2005). By the same token, Wang and Ollendick (2001) stated that self-esteem involves an evaluation of oneself followed by an emotional reaction towards oneself. The evaluative and affective elements are present in all extant definitions and theories of self-esteem. Brown, Dutton, and Cook (2001) distinguished three ways in which the term “self-esteem” is used: (a) global or trait self-esteem to refer to the way people characteristically feel about themselves, i.e., feelings of affection for oneself; (b) self-evaluation to refer to the way people evaluate their various abilities and attributes, and (c) feelings of self-esteem to refer to momentary emotional states, e.g., a person might say her self-esteem was sky-high after getting a big promotion, or a person might say his self-esteem plummeted after a divorce.

Perhaps the simplest definition of self-esteem is found in Webster’s dictionary, which says that “self-esteem is satisfaction with oneself”. In another edition of the same dictionary, self-esteem means “one’s good opinion of one’s dignity or worth”.


Personality is defined as the characteristic set of behaviorscognitions, and emotional patterns that evolve from biological and environmental factors. While there is no generally agreed upon definition of personality, most theories focus on motivation and psychological interactions with one's environment. Trait-based personality theories, such as those defined by Raymond Cattell define personality as the traits that predict a person's behavior. On the other hand, more behaviorally based approaches define personality through learning and habits. Nevertheless, most theories view personality as relatively stable.

The study of the psychology of personality, called personality psychology, attempts to explain the tendencies that underlie differences in behavior. Many approaches have been taken on to study personality, including biological, cognitive, learning and trait based theories, as well as psychodynamic, and humanistic approaches. Personality psychology is divided among the first theorists, with a few influential theories being posited by Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Gordon Allport, Hans Eysenck, Abraham Maslow, and Carl Rogers.


Development is not purely an economic phenomenon but rather a multi-dimensional process involving reorganization and reorientation of entire economic and social system. Development is process of improving the quality of all human lives with three equally important aspects.

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