Outcomes of a cluster randomized controlled trial of the SoMe Social Media Literacy Program for Improving Body Image-Related Outcomes in Adolescent Boys and Girls

Journal article


Gordon, Chloe S., Jarman, Hannah K., Rodgers, Rachel F., Mclean, Siân A., Slater, Amy, Fuller-Tyszkiewicz, Matthew and Paxton, Susan J.. (2021). Outcomes of a cluster randomized controlled trial of the SoMe Social Media Literacy Program for Improving Body Image-Related Outcomes in Adolescent Boys and Girls. Nutrients. 13(11), p. Article 3825. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13113825
AuthorsGordon, Chloe S., Jarman, Hannah K., Rodgers, Rachel F., Mclean, Siân A., Slater, Amy, Fuller-Tyszkiewicz, Matthew and Paxton, Susan J.
Abstract

Although the negative effect of social media use among youth on body image and eating concerns has been established, few classroom-based resources that can decrease these effects through targeting social media literacy skills have been developed. This study aimed to test the efficacy of SoMe, a social media literacy body image, dieting, and wellbeing program for adolescents, through a cluster randomized controlled trial. Participants (n = 892; Mage = 12.77, SD = 0.74; range 11–15; 49.5% male) were randomized by school (n = 8) to receive either weekly SoMe (n = 483) or control sessions (lessons as usual; n = 409) over 4 weeks in their classroom. Participants completed surveys at four timepoints (baseline, 1-week post-intervention, and 6- and 12-month follow-up) assessing body dissatisfaction, dietary restraint, strategies to increase muscles (primary outcomes), self-esteem and depressive symptoms (secondary outcomes), and internalization of appearance ideals and appearance comparison (exploratory outcomes). Modest positive intervention effects were found in dietary restraint and depressive symptoms at 6-month follow-up in girls but few positive effects emerged for boys. The findings provide only preliminary support for a social media literacy intervention, but suggest the usefulness of both identifying those who benefit most from a universally delivered intervention and the need to refine the intervention to maximize intervention effects.

Keywordsbody image; dietary restraint; wellbeing; social media; RCT; adolescents; eating disorders; school-based prevention
Year2021
JournalNutrients
Journal citation13 (11), p. Article 3825
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI AG)
ISSN2072-6643
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13113825
PubMed ID34836084
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85117941002
PubMed Central IDPMC8674763
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1-17
FunderAustralian Research Council (ARC)
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online27 Oct 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted22 Oct 2021
Deposited24 May 2022
ARC Funded ResearchThis output has been funded, wholly or partially, under the Australian Research Council Act 2001
Grant IDARC/DP170100709
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