The modern-day world becomes more accessible by the minute. Physical borders no longer are the limitation they once were. With freedom of movement available at our fingertips, the opportunities to explore, study, and work in a foreign country grow more common. However, the responsibilities attached to this rise as well. Universities and employers expect sojourners to be flexible and easily adapt to the environments they move to and deliver the best of their performance, which is not always as easy at sounds. Multiple factors contribute towards the well-being of sojourners abroad. This study aims to combine personality traits, digital media usage, and social identity in a novelty way, examining how the unique characteristics of the individual strengthen or lessen the relationship between their digital media usage and social identity. Therefore, this thesis asked: “What is the effect of personality and digital media usage on social identification and well-being of sojourners?” This research inquired sojourners (N=229) about which digital media platforms they use and their habits with different social groups, before measuring how they socially identify, their personality traits profile, and how satisfied are they with various aspects of their lives. Digital media usage was a significant predictor for all social identities (home, host, international). At the same time, however, the only significant change in life satisfaction occurred when sojourners saw themselves as members of their host country, wanting to remain there. Interesting enough, the more international sojourners saw themselves, the greater their desire to be on the move and not stay at the same place for too long. Personality traits proved to be partially influential only when digital media use occurred with already established, long-term connection back in their home country. Overall, this study concludes that maintaining digital media use with particular groups influences how well sojourns feel while abroad, with personality traits not always playing a role. Findings of this study open the academic debate for further investing the role of the individual in maintaining his/her social identities, as well as providing the basis for developing more accurate tools to predict sojourner’s retention rate abroad.

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Keywords media, culture, society, Sojourner, Digital Media Usage, Social Identity, Personality traits, Retention
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Series Media, Culture & Society
Personality as a Moderator of Social Media Usage and Social Identity in Sojourners A Quantitative Study. (2018, July 4). Personality as a Moderator of Social Media Usage and Social Identity in Sojourners A Quantitative Study. Media, Culture & Society. Retrieved from