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Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Thesis: Campus only access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Karen Kochel


In the fall of 2019, the Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention detected a novel coronavirus in two hospital patients, a virus later declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization (Qui, 2020). To replace the vital social connectedness that the human species thrives off of throughout social distancing and self-isolation protocols, individuals have turned to online interactions via social media platforms to foster a sense of connectedness to others. The present study aims to explore to what extent social media use affects psychological well-being among undergraduate students amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and if gender moderates this relationship. Results supported that social media use was a significant predictor of depression and a significant predictor of anxiety. Gender was also a significant predictor of depression and anxiety. However, gender was not found to be a significant moderator. The group who appeared to be at greatest risk of clinical depression and moderate anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic was frequent, female social media users.