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TitleAssociations between COVID-19-related digital health literacy and online information-seeking behavior among Portuguese university students
Author(s)Rosário, Rafaela
Martins, Maria R. O.
Augusto, Cláudia
Silva, Maria José
Martins, Silvana
Duarte, Ana Catarina Silva Pinto
Fronteira, Inês
Ramos, Neida
Okan, Orkan
Dadaczynski, Kevin
Keywordsdigital health literacy
university students
information-seeking behavior
Issue dateDec-2020
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI)
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
CitationRosário, R.; Martins, M.R.O.; Augusto, C.; Silva, M.J.; Martins, S.; Duarte, A.; Fronteira, I.; Ramos, N.; Okan, O.; Dadaczynski, K. Associations between COVID-19-Related Digital Health Literacy and Online Information-Seeking Behavior among Portuguese University Students. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 8987. DOI: 10.3390/ijerph17238987
Abstract(s)We aim to evaluate the associations between digital health literacy (DHL) related to COVID-19 and online information-seeking behavior among university students. Methods: A total of 3.084 students (75.7% women), with an average age of 24.2 (SD = 7.5) participated in this cross-sectional study, most of whom (36.5%) were from social sciences and pursued a bachelor’s degree (50.7%). Data on COVID-19-related DHL and online information-seeking behavior were collected using an online questionnaire. Logistic regression models were performed. Results: As the pandemic progressed, participants showed a lower chance of achieving a sufficient DHL (OR = 0.7; 95% CI = 0.6; 0.9). Using search engines more often (e.g., Google) (OR = 0.7; 95% CI = 0.5; 0.9), Wikipedia (OR = 0.7; 95% CI = 0.6; 0.9) and social media (e.g., Facebook) (OR = 0.7; 95% CI = 0.6; 0.9) decreased the likelihood of achieving sufficient DHL related to COVID-19. More frequent use of websites of public bodies (OR = 1.7; 95% CI = 1.1; 2.5) increased the odds of reporting sufficient DHL. Conclusion: DHL is associated with university students’ online information-seeking behavior in the time of COVID-19. From a community and public health perspective, programs aiming at improving DHL should be highlighted.
DescriptionThe following are available online at, Table S1: Associations between sources of information and DHL related with COVID-19.
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AccessOpen access
Appears in Collections:ESE-CIE - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais / Papers in International Journals

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