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Cyberpsychology Research at the University of Wolverhampton (CRUW)

CRUW seek to provide a forum to promote the academic and applied socio-psychological study of the impact of the Internet and emerging technologies (e.g. smartphones, virtual reality) on the everyday lives of different groups within society. 

We envisage the scope and range of possible areas of research to be quite extensive. Current topics of interest include: online impression managment, personality predictors of online behaviour, blogging motivations and behaviour, the expression of humour online, online self-disclosure, intellectual disability and online behaviour and the use of textspeak by children in appropriate and inappropriate contexts.

Suggestions from potential PhD students and research collaborators (from academia and practice), and enquiries from anyone interested in our work are welcome. For media enquiries please contact one of the group coordinators (Dr Alison Attrill-Smith or Dr Chris Fullwood) - contact details can be found by clicking on the names below.

CRUW News 

New cross-national study launched by researchers interested in how people present themselves online 

We are recruiting participants for a new psychological study to investigate how people present to others in different contexts. If you are over 16 (18 if you are living in Ireland) and English is your first language, we invite you to take part in this study.  It will involve completing an online survey with short questionnaires and should take about 30 minutes to complete. Our team includes researchers from the University of Sydney (Australia), the Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Dun Laoghaire (Ireland), the Texas Woman’s University (USA), and the University of Wolverhampton (UK).  All participants will be given an opportunity at the end of the survey to enter a prize draw to win one of eight gift vouchers (either $30AUD, $20USD, £20 or €20). Here is the link to the survey: 

CRUW Coordinators

  • Dr Chris Fullwood
    Self-presentation/impression management online; blogging motivations and behaviour; online relationships/dating; online social interaction 
  • Dr Alison Attrill-Smith
    Online self and relationships; security and criminal online activity; online social interaction

CRUW PhD Students

  • Luigi Bonetti
    A longitudinal cohort study on the perceptions and psychosocial consequences of Internet use by school students with and without special educational needs and disabilities
  • Azar Eftekhar 
    Detecting visual markers of personality in online settings
  • Rachel Harrad 
    Social networking and social comparisons
  • Nicola Fox-Hamilton 
    Homophily in attraction: linguistic encoding of personality and culture online
  • Audrey Stenson
    An exploration of the role of private and public online friendships in college adjustment and persistence in college
  • Theresa Summerfield
    Exploring the social and educational aspects of textspeak use by typically and non-typically developing children
  • Claire Tranter
    Cognition in context: understanding persuasion for information-gathering in synthetic environments across cultural and cognitive divides

CRUW Members

  • Dr Trey Asbury (Texas Woman’s University)
    Social networking sites for at-risk populations; technology & boundary management
  • Dr Darren Chadwick
    Intellectual disability and online behaviour
  • Dr Josephine Chen-Wilson
    E-learning; textspeak and literacy development
  • Nicola Derrer-Rendall
    Online consumer behaviour
  • Dr Niall Galbraith
    Personality and Internet use; social support online
  • Dr Grainne Kirwan (IADT, Dun Laoghaire)
    Forensic and health Psychology online; Psychology of Virtual Reality
  • Dr Neil Morris
    Internet grazing; personality and Internet use; health and safety promotion; texting
  • Dr Wendy Nicholls
    Internet use/technology and psychological/physical well-being; online relationships; online support
  • Dr Lisa Orchard 
    Personality differences online; online social networking and group processes; general cyberpsychology
  • Dr Tracey Platt
    Social interactions with machine interfaces; emotion in virtual agents; expression of humour online
  • Dr Sally Quinn (University of York)
    Online relationships, positive uses of technology, belonging and other indicators of wellbeing
  • Dr Caroline Wesson
    Intellectual disability and online behaviour


We have previously hosted a number of international conferences, including the 22nd Annual CyberPsychology, CyberTherapy & Social Networking Conference (CYPSY22) on 26-28 June, 2017 and the Social Networking in Cyberspace (SNIC) conference, which we have held on 3 occasions in 2010, 2013 and 2015. For information on the last SNIC conference in 2015 please visit the official SNIC 2015 webpage. We also hold an annual CRUW conference in April at which our PhD students get to showcase their current work and we have had a number of fantastic keynote speakers discuss their research including Dr Chris Stiff and Dr Masa Popovac

CRUW Summer Internships (2016)

Congratulations to Adam Beesley, Charitini Pitsiakou and Kim Van den Eeckhout for their successful CRUW Summer Internship applications. Our Summer Interns worked on projects over the summer of 2016. A final report on the work of all 3 of our 2016 interns can be downloaded here 2016 CRUW intern report (PDF 310K, Downloads file)

Questionnaires Developed by CRUW

The following scales have been developed by members of CRUW and are free to use by anyone, providing a citation is given in any published outputs. Citation information and details pertaining to internal consistency are included in the downloadable documents below (click on links below to begin download).

Social Media Motivations Scale (SMMS)

The SMMS measures the motivations that individuals may have for using Social Networking Sites (SNS). The following constructs are measured by the SMMS: procrastination, freedom of expression, conformity, information exchange, new connections, ritual, social maintenance, escapism, recreation and experimentation. Our own research using the SMSS (Orchard, Fullwood, Galbraith and Morris, 2014) has shown that individuals with various personality profiles are motivated to use SNS for different reasons. For example, individuals who score high on Psychoticism value the use of SNS for the ability to express themselves freely. 

SMMS (Word doc 24k).

Blogging Motivations Questionnaire (BMQ)

The BMQ measures individuals' motivations for keeping blogs. The following blogging motivations are measured by the BMQ: emotional outlet, social networking, advertising, personal revelation, creative outlet and selective disclosure. Our own research using the BMQ (Fullwood, Nicholls and Makichi, 2015) has demonstrated that blogging motivations can be predicted by personality and individual differences. For example, we note how Agreeableness relates to the use of the blog for selective disclosure, which may be a direct attempt by the blogger to manage the impressions of others.

BMQ (Word doc 55k)

Selected Publications from CRUW Members

  • Chadwick, D., Quinn, S., & Fullwood, C. (2017). Perceptions of the risks and benefits of Internet access and use by people with intellectual disabilities. British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 45(1), 23-31.
  • Fullwood, C., Quinn, S., Kaye, L.K., & Reddings, C. (2017). My Virtual friend: A qualitative analysis of the attitudes and experiences of Smartphone users: Implications for Smartphone attachment. Computers in Human Behavior, 75, 347-355.
  • Hofmann, J., Platt, T., & Ruch, W. (2017). Laughter and smiling in 16 positive emotions. IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing. 
  • Attrill, A., & Fullwood, C. (2016). Applied Cyberpsychology: Practical applications of Cyberpsychological research and theory. Palgrave Macmillan. 
  • Attrill, A. (2015). Cyberpsychology. Oxford University Press: Oxford.
  • Fullwood, C., James, B., & Chen-Wilson, J. (2016). Self-concept clarity and online self-presentation in adolescents. CyberPsychology, Behavior and Social Networking, 19(12), 716-720
  • Fullwood, C. (2015). The role of personality in online self-presentation. In A. Attrill (Ed.) Cyberpsychology (pp. 9-28). Oxford University Press, Oxford. 
  • Fullwood, C., Nicholls, N., & Makichi, R. (2015). We've got something for everyone: How individual differences predict different blogging motivations. New Media and Society, 17(9), 1583-1600.
  • Fullwood, C., Quinn, S., Chen-Wilson, J., Chadwick. D., & Reynolds, K. (2015). Put on a smiley face: Textspeak and personality perceptions. Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking. 18(3), 147-151. 
  • Orchard, L., Fullwood, C., Morris, N., & Galbraith, N. (2015). Investigating the Facebook experience through Q methodology: Collective investment and a ‘Borg’ mentality. New Media and Society. 17(9), 1547-1565
  • Attrill, A. (2014). The misconception of online splurging and associated security risks.  Cybertalk, UK.
  • Eftekhar, A., Fullwood, C., & Morris, N. (2014). Capturing personality from Facebook photos and photo-related activities: How much exposure do you need? Computers in Human Behavior, 37, 162–170.
  • Orchard, L., Fullwood, C., Galbraith, N., & Morris. (2014). Individual differences as predictors of social networking. Journal of Computer Mediated Communication, 19(3), 388-402. 
  • Chadwick, D., Fullwood, C., & Wesson, C. (2013). Intellectual disability, identity and the Internet. In R. Luppicini (Ed.) Handbook of research on technoself: identity in a technological society. USA: IGI Global (pp. 229-254).
  • Chadwick, D., Wesson, C., & Fullwood, C. (2013). Internet access by people with intellectual disabilities: Inequalities and opportunities. Future Internet, 5(3), 376-397.
  • Fullwood, C., Melrose, K., Morris, N., & Floyd, S. (2013). Sex, blogs and baring your soul: Factors influencing UK blogging strategies. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 64(2), 345-355.
  • Fullwood, C., Orchard, L., & Floyd, S. (2013). Emoticon convergence in Internet chat rooms. Social Semiotics, 23(5), 648-662.
  • Attrill, A. (2012). Self-disclosure online. In Zheng Yan (Ed.) Encyclopedia of cyber behavior. Ing pulishers: New York.
  • Attrill, A. (2012). Sharing only parts of me: categorical self-disclosure across Internet Arenas. International Journal of Internet Science, 7(1), 55-77
  • Attrill, A., & Jalil, R. (2011). Revealing only the superficial me: Exploring categorical self-disclosure online. Computers in Human Behavior, 27, 1634 – 1642.
  • Fullwood, C., Evans, L. & Morris, N. (2011). Linguistic Androgyny on MySpace, Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 30(1), 114-124.
  • Fullwood, C., Thelwall, M., & O’Neill, S. (2011). Clandestine Chatters: Self-disclosure in UK chat room profiles. First Monday, Volume 16, Number 5-2.
  • Fullwood, C., & Finn, M. (2010). Video-mediated communication and impression formation: An integrative review.  In Adam C. Rayler (Ed.) Videoconferencing: Technology, Impact and Applications. Nova Science.
  • Orchard, L.J. & Fullwood, C. (2010). Current perspectives on personality and Internet use. Social Science Computer Review, 28(2), 155-169.
  • Fullwood, C., Sheehan, N., & Nicholls, W. (2009). Blog function revisited: A content analysis of MySpace blogs. CyberPsychology, Behavior and Social Networking, 12, 685-689.
  • Fullwood, C., & Wootton, N. (2009). Comforting communication in an online epilepsy forum. Journal of Cybertherapy and rehabilitation, 2(2), 159-164.
  • Fullwood, C., Galbraith, N. and Morris, N. (2006). Impulsive Nonconformity in Female Chat Room Users. CyberPsychology, Behavior and Social Networking, 9(5), 634-637.