Psychological Aspects Of Informational Socialization In Multicultural World


The role of information socialization in the modern multicultural world is analysed, the significance of psychological transitivity is revealed. The growing role of information culture and information socialization for adequate positioning in this space is shown. The influence of age, place of residence, language and socio-cultural identity on the process of information socialization is considered. The results of the empiric study of information socialization of adolescents, youth and adults from Moscow, Petrozavodsk and Syktyvkar are presented. Several leading trends in information socialization in the modern multicultural and transitive world are worked out. It is proved that the differences between young people and adult respondents consist in the choice of information sources (Internet and TV respectively), the degree of confidence in them, as well as in the level of development of the operational side of the information culture. These differences are largely the source of intergenerational conflicts. Differences in the choice of information and trust in it between residents of large and small towns are shown; these differences manifest themselves regardless of age. It is proved that in the process of information socialization the role of Russian (as well as foreign) language among young people of Karelia and Komi increases, while the need for knowledge of the native, Karelian and Komi languages decreases. It is proved that a mixed linguistic identity increases tolerance to uncertainty and optimize socialization of adolescents in a multicultural environment.

Keywords: Informational socializationinformational preferencesmulticultural worldlinguistic identity


Informational socialisation in transitive world

The problem of information socialization in recent years became one of the most important (Castells, 2000, Toffler, 2002), as the younger generation lives in a fundamentally new social and information space, in which the words "information culture" are not abstract concepts, but existing reality. At the same time, it should be noted that information socialization and information space for psychology, in contrast to cultural studies and sociology, are mainly "terra incognito", as psychological researches focuses mainly on the problems of Internet communications and Internet addiction. However, it is quite obvious that the information space is wider than the Internet communication space, and the relation to information, to different information fields (sources), including the Internet, is associated with a variety of psychological factors (Voiskunskii, 2000). Among these problems, of course, are issues related to the fan of possible identities manifested in various forms of communication and interaction, and problems related to new variants of the translation of ideals, norms and values ​​in the intergroup and intergenerational transmission, as well as the questions associated with communication and interaction of people of different cultures in the current situation of transitivity.

Social transitivity is characterized not only by the multiplicity, that is, the simultaneous existence of several variants of the social world in one temporal and spatial continuum, but also by a constant changes of these variants in an unpredictable direction and with indefinite content. Thus, one can speak of transitivity as a multiplicity, variability and uncertainty of macro and micro social spaces. Multiplicity in this case is connected, first of all, with the expansion of the multicultural space of socialization. Globalization and mass migration processes increase cultural, linguistic, social multiplicity, which further enhances the volatility of seemingly familiar surroundings.

Objective complexities and psychological stress connected not only and not so much with the multiplicity and uncertainty itself, but mainly in attitude to them, as people are afraid and anxious about ever greater changes. Therefore tolerance to variability and uncertainty, as well as the need to understand the language and culture of other people, are one of the most important factors that reduce tension and, thus, the degree of complexity and difficulty of the situation of transitivity.

Intergeneration and intercultural transmission of information

Information is one of the ways to organize, structure the image of the world, which imposes a special responsibility on the media and the ways it is submitted to respondents, especially adolescents and young people. It has been repeatedly emphasized (Bauman, 2008; Martsinkovskaya, 2015) that the "information dimension" of the content of socialization is of particular relevance for adolescence. Actualizes the problem of information socialization and the fact that information helps an adequate positioning in a constantly changing, uncertain complex system, which is the current reality.

Therefore, one of the leading now days research topics is the study of the process of perception and processing of information in different social and age groups. From M. Berzonski's point of view, cognitive-style specificity can become one of the bases of identity formation in information socialization (Berzonsky, 2008). In his opinion, the attitude to information, the ability to process this information, determines the formation of a certain identity - information, normative and diffuse. Thus, we can assume that the process of information socialization is determined not by several separate factors, but by an integrated complex of individual and personal traits.

Problem Statement

The representation of the culture as a constituent of the personal (and informational) space of a human being that is constructed by means of an adequate language can be considered as fundamental for the analysis of the psychological component of the information culture. If the personal information space can be associated with both the level of individual culture and with the identity, the socio-cultural information space is associated not only with the choice of an adequate channel and source of information, but also with the language.

Equally important for the understanding of information socialization is the fact that today vital information is often cannot be broadcast in direct contacts. Therefore, from the point of view of theory, and from the point of view of the practice in studying of information socialization, the analysis of intergenerational transmission is an extremely important issue. In large cities, the processes of exchange of experience, the transition from one form of transmission to another, are substantially accelerated in comparison with more traditional small cities, especially in ethnically homogeneous areas. The information space in which various members of the family are immersed is also of great importance for intergenerational ties and the exchange of experience.

Research Questions

The necessity to understand the factors and determinants of information preferences and style of information socialization in different regions and in different age groups define the aims of this study.

Purpose of the Study

1. Information preferences and directions of information socialization

2. Attitude to the native (minority) language and national culture;

3. Attitude to the Russian language and world culture;

These assumptions were checked in the course of empirical research of teenager’s and youth’s informational socialization in the megalopolis (Moscow), the capital of Karelia Petrozavodsk and the capital of Komi Syktyvkar.


Teenagers and youth from Petrozavodsk and Syktyvkar represent mainly ethnically homogeneous group, the participants from Moscow belonged to different ethnic groups. In research also participate grown up persons, mainly teenager’s parents aged 35-50 years.

Research was conducted on base:

  • several comprehensive schools of Moscow, 325 teenagers aged from 15 till 17,5 years;

  • comprehensive school in the capital of Karelia Petrozavodsk. 65 pupils of 15-17 years.

  • comprehensive school in the capital of Komi Syktyvkar. 85 pupils of 15-17 years

The study was conducted in 2015-2016. All the participants gave their consent to participate in the study.

Research Methods

  • The questionnaire “Information preferences”, Martsinkovskaya, (Identichnost' i sotsializatsiya, 2015);

  • The questionnaire “Ethnic identity”, Martsinkovskaya, Huzeeva, (Identichnost' i sotsializatsiya, 2015);

  • The questionnaire “My country” – which estimate attitude to the native country, culture and language Martsinkovskaya, (Identichnost' i sotsializatsiya, 2015) ;

The questionnaire “Referent groups” Martsinkovskaya, Huzeeva, (Identichnost' i sotsializatsiya, 2015).


6.1 Materials obtained in our researches showed that young people trust the information from Internet, and they use Internet sources very often, which significantly distinguish them from their parents and teachers. The problem is not so much in the operational side (adults use less electronic media because they have less skill in using them) than with attitude to them and trust in them. Most adults are more TV-oriented and believe that the Internet is harmful to health. However, they do not see the unique opportunities for cultural and cognitive development in new technologies; do not understand the features of communication on the Internet. For young people who, in turn, do not trust television, these adults can’t be meaningful, respected and do not inspire confidence in their advice in other areas of social reality. This suggests that in the choice of information sources and information fields, adolescents are actually left to themselves and cannot (even if they would) be guided by the opinion of adults.

6.2 The materials obtained in the study of information preferences of people who recently arrived in Moscow showed that a significant difference of this group is the high interest in political news, as well as the fact that TV is the dominant source of information. Moscow's permanent residents of mature age still have alternative sources of knowledge (including print media and the Internet). For the rest of the respondents (both adults and teenagers), the greatest interest is not politics, but professional knowledge, culture, sports, secular chronicle, etc. This fact is important not so much in itself, but in connection with the possibility of predicting the choice of the field of information and, in part, the form of the media, depending on the group's referral, its social and ethnic affiliation.

6.3. The obtained results showed that professional interest plays one of the most important roles in information socialization. As showed our materials, friends, teachers, parents, have less influence on the choice of the information field both in content and in form than professional motivation. This phenomenon is especially evident in the case of the coincidence of professional and group identity. Obtained facts showed that no less important than professional and group identity, in choosing the form and content of the media, is the place of residence of adolescents. Adolescents from big cities have more choice and greater variety in sources of information, primarily in content. At the same time, it was shown that for young people from small settlements the degree of trust in the all information received from various souses is much higher than in the megalopolis. It is especially important that it is in small cities that the media plays the role of a source and object of civil and ethnic identity, while in large cities it acts as factor of group and personal identity.

6.4. Our materials show that the developmental tasks at the stage of growing up are also manifested in the content of information socialization. The tasks related to self-determination and self-realization are frequently solved with a help of various media. This is manifested in the structuring and differentiation of the information space, the emergence of various information sources alternate in form and content, a growing distrust to television and advertising. An interesting fact is the increase of interest in older adolescents to popular science films and books, as well as to mysticism and thrillers. Apparently, this can be explained by the desire to realize the value and fragility of life, to understand its purpose, to form self-image of the world. This turn to another area of the information space that is not connected with the Internet (while maintaining a significant share of the Internet in the general structure of information fields of adolescents and young people) is a positive fact, showing a turn from the virtual world to the real world. This is a progressive trend, as the fascination with virtual games, giving the feeling of "spare" lives, "spare options" for building their destiny, not only reduces the sense of real risks, but also reality as it is, make teenagers extremely vulnerable when stressful, unfavorable life situations occur.

6.5 Another important fact is the difference in the structure of communication between individual users of computers and teenagers in Internet clubs. As the materials show, if in the first group is dominating the desire for communication, then the second group is striving for entertainment. At the same time, cognitive motivation, although not explicitly, occurs in both groups of young people. Apparently, the teenagers of the first group compensate some personal problems that cause difficulties in the initial establishment of contacts, by communication in the network. The second group should be considered as an informal structure and has all the features of a self-organizing team building up its subculture.

6.6. The results obtained from the analysis of the answers of adolescents from Petrozavodsk and Syktyvkar showed that they are characterized by a positive attitude towards the native (Karelian, Komi and Russian) and foreign languages and world culture. Young men and women have a more positive attitude towards the national, rather than world culture and native languages (Karelian, Komi and Russian). A very small group of young people is characterized by an aggressive orientation toward their culture, but not language, as the Russian language remains native. In adolescents of both age groups, such respondents were not identified.

The younger respondents have a positive attitude towards the global culture and languages - Russian and English. At the same time, the number of answers that emphasize the need for knowledge of the Karelian and Komi language is reduced. Positive is the fact that the number of responses reflecting a negative attitude towards foreign culture and languages is decreasing. At the same time, the attitude towards the environment (towards people and the world as a whole) becomes more severe and partly aggressive, which is closely related to a high level of anxiety for almost all respondents.

It should be noted that a positive attitude towards foreign culture and foreign (English) languages in most teenagers and young people is harmoniously combined with a positive perception of their culture, but not language. In the structure of identity, language occupies a small place and, the younger the respondents, the less significant it is, in their opinion, for future life and work.

A qualitative analysis of the answers showed that the need for Karelian or Komi languages can be manifested as one of the variants of cognitive activity, interest in culture, the history of native country, which is, connected with the socio-cultural identity and is in harmony with it. There are a lot of such answers in adolescents of both age groups, but it is much less frequent in young men and girls. The most pronounced is the attitude to language as a way to expand the circle of communication (including virtual communication) and implement plans for the future, with the Russian language and foreign (more often English) languages coming to the forefront. Only for a very small group of young men (less often girls) the Karelian or Komi language acts as a means of self-identification and career building.


It is possible to realise several main trends that are manifested in the process of information socialization in a multicultural world.

Teenagers trust information about different areas of the world around them, obtained from the Internet, much more than information obtained from other sources. This difference is significant even when compared with the degree of trust of various media in adolescents and young people, and is radically different in adolescents and adults

Adults are significantly more than teenagers and young people, pay attention to television programs (both as a source of information and as a background), they also trust television information and advertising much more than teenagers.

For the adult sample, the most interesting is verbal and visual information (films, TV shows, books). For adolescents and young people, music becomes increasingly it plays the role of the general background of life and as instrument of obtaining information about the world around.

The problems that arise in the process of intergenerational transmission are associated not only with the attitude and trust in different sources of information, but also with the degree of tolerance to them and with the technological, operational aspect of the information culture, which are significantly higher among young people compared with the mature and older generations.

There are differences in the information socialization and information culture related to the place of residence - a metropolis and a small settlement. These differences are manifested regardless of the age and personality of a person.

The need for Russian and foreign languages is becoming an increasingly important factor in the choice of information resources. Therefore, a mixed linguistic identity for adolescents and young people is predominantly a positive moment, increasing tolerance for uncertainty and their socialization in a multicultural environment.


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13 December 2017

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Cognitive theory, educational equipment, educational technology, computer-aided learning (CAL), psycholinguistics

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Martsinkovskaya, T., Huzeeva, G., Balashova, E., Golubeva, N., Dubovskaya, E., Ayanan, A., Grebennikova, O., & Isotova, E. (2017). Psychological Aspects Of Informational Socialization In Multicultural World. In S. B. Malykh, & E. V. Nikulchev (Eds.), Psychology and Education - ICPE 2017, vol 33. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 256-262). Future Academy.