The Mediating Role of Metacognition in the Relationship between Internet Addiction and General Health

Document Type : Original Article(s)


1 MA in General Psychology, Department of Psychology, School of Humanities, Payame Noor University, Dubai, UAE

2 MA in Educational Researches, Department of Educational Sciences, School of Educational and Psychology Sciences, Farhangian University, Hamadan, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology and Educational Sciences, School of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Ferdowsi University, Mashhad, Iran.

4 MA in Educational Sciences, Department of Education, Zanjan Province Education Office, Zanjan, Iran


Background: Internet addiction is one of the harmful effects of the Internet. The findings of several studies have indicated a relationship between general health and Internet addiction. Metacognition, which includes the knowledge, processes, and strategies to evaluate, and monitor or control the cognition, can play a significant role in this regard. The present research aimed to assess the mediating role of metacognitive variables in the relationship between Internet addiction and general health. Methods: This correlational study included 94 male and female users with different nationalities at Internet cafés in Abu Dhabi (the United Arab Emirates). All subjects aged at least 18 years and were proficient in English. The research tools included the General Health Questionnaire (with a reliability of 0.89), Metacognition Questionnaire (with a reliability of 0.82), and Kimberly Young's Internet Addiction Test (with a reliability of 0.88). The hypothesis was tested applying SPSS18 and Amos18. Findings: The results indicated a significant positive relationship between all aspects of metacognition and Internet addiction (r = 0.30; P < 0.01). A significant positive relationship was also observed between Internet addiction and general health (r = 0.47; P < 0.01). Path analysis revealed the mediating role of metacognition in the relationship between low general health and Internet addiction. Among the metacognitive variables, the mind control had the highest correlation coefficient (r = 0.80). Conclusion: The Internet and digital technologies have caused unwanted and negative effects which are classified as emerging damages. The relationship between Internet addiction and general health has been confirmed in this research. In addition, metacognitive processes can have a positive and mediating role on this relationship.   Keywords: Internet, Internet addiction, General health, Metacognition