Instagram Usage Among Adolescents: A Study of Media Dependency on Academic Performance and Religious Obligation During the COVID-19 Pandemic


  • Daffa Al Falah Department of Communication, International Islamic University Malaysia, Malaysia


Instagram, adolescent, pandemic, academic performance, religious obligations


Academic excellence is a major factor on a student’s success in addition to religiosity; especially in Indonesia where strong religious values are upheld. However, maintaining performance at school and religious obligations had become difficult challenges that emerged due to the stay-at-home policy during the COVID-19 pandemic. The intensifying Instagram usage among Indonesian teenagers is predicted to significantly contribute to this problem. This study focused on analyzing the impact of Instagram usage on the academic and religious performances of adolescent Muslims in Indonesia during the pandemic. The author utilized qualitative methodology by applying focus group interviews to test the Media Dependency theory as the basis of this study. The population for the study was 24 Muslim male students aged 15–18 from Jakarta, Indonesia. An indexing and retrieval system was used through identifying key terms and grouping the interview excerpt into salient themes for data analysis. Interestingly, the result showed that Instagram dependency per se had low negative influences on the informants’ quality of academic and religious practices. Therefore, further studies are expected to also measure the other variables at once, particularly online games and other social media apps due to the students’ feasibility to simultaneously access multiple instruments.


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