Date of Conferral
There is no current research on the relationship between texting frequency, social competency development, and the moderating effect of gender in adolescents. A quantitative study involving a moderation design using multiple regression assisted in determining the relationship between cell phone texting and gender and whether or not the interaction of these variables predicted social competency development. The theoretical base that grounded this study was the taxonomic model of social competence, which identified the importance of examining social awareness abilities such as communication, an essential component for the development of social competency. The study included 74 participants. The participants were parents who completed observation checklists of their adolescent children and reported on skills related to social competency development using the Social Emotional Assets and Resilience Scales-Parent Form. A general measure of cell phone use was also reported by participants. The results showed that frequency of texting and gender predicted adolescent social competency. Adolescents who texted frequently had lower social competency scores. Adolescent females had higher social competency than adolescent males. Gender was not found to moderate the relationship between the variables. The results can be used to development curricula, programs, and screening tools for counseling psychologists and other professionals to use to improve the lives of adolescents.