Educated but anxious

How emotional states and education levels combine to influence online health information seeking

Jessica Myrick, Jessica Fitts Willoughby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study combined conceptual frameworks from health information seeking, appraisal theory of emotions, and social determinants of health literatures to examine how emotional states and education predict online health information seeking. Nationally representative data from the Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS 4, Cycle 3) were used to test the roles of education, anxiety, anger, sadness, hope, happiness, and an education by anxiety interaction in predicting online health information seeking. Results suggest that women, tablet owners, smartphone owners, the college educated, those who are sad some or all of the time, and those who are anxious most of the time were significantly more likely to seek online health information. Conversely, being angry all of the time decreased the likelihood of seeking. Furthermore, two significant interactions emerged between anxiety and education levels. Discrete psychological states and demographic factors (gender and education) individually and jointly impact information seeking tendencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)649-660
Number of pages12
JournalHealth informatics journal
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019

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Education
Health
Anxiety
Hope
Social Determinants of Health
Happiness
Anger
Tablets
Emotions
Demography
Psychology

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health Informatics

Cite this

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Educated but anxious : How emotional states and education levels combine to influence online health information seeking. / Myrick, Jessica; Willoughby, Jessica Fitts.

In: Health informatics journal, Vol. 25, No. 3, 01.09.2019, p. 649-660.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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