Internet Addiction Test (IAT)

Kimberly Young‚ (1996)

The Internet Addiction Test (InAT; Young, 1998) is a 20 item self-report questionnaire that measures problematic internet use or “Internet Addiction”. Internet Addiction, a concept proposed by Young (1998), is defined as excessive and uncontrollable use of the internet that leads to problematic behaviour and impairments in daily function. For example, a user that experiences low mood from not using the internet or who lies about how much they use the internet are exhibiting symptoms that may be related to Internet Addiction (Servidio, 2017). Note that Internet Addiction is not currently recognised as a disorder in the DSM-5, although there are calls for further research in this area (see DSM-5, section II and section III).

The InAT can be administered to any internet user from  adolescent age onwards (where appropriate language translations exist) to screen for internet addiction. Respondents answer items questions on a 6 point scale (0 = does not apply, 5 = always) and scores can range from 0-100. Scores that are 39 or less indicate average usage, scores from 40 – 69 indicate problematic usage and scores 70 and higher indicate severely problematic usage (Jelenchick, Becker, & Moreno, 2012). Example of item questions include “Do you block out disturbing thoughts about your life with soothing thoughts of the internet?” The IAT is considered easy to administer (can be distributed online) and relative easy to comprehend, assuming the respondent has a basic level of literacy ability. It is estimated to take no more than 10 – 15 minutes to complete. The IAT is currently freely available online through peer-reviewed scholarly journals and there does not appear to be any restriction on its use.

Young’s (2017) interest, and subsequent proposal “Internet Addiction” and the InAT, came from observations of her friend’s disintegrating marriage due to internet usage. The husband of the relationship spent excessive time and money on the internet and developed extramarital affairs online (Young, 2017). At this time, other behavioural addiction research were covering topics such as excessive video gaming and television use but not specifically “Internet Addiction” (Young, 1998). The DSM-IV-TR also recognised pathological gambling as the only non-toxin/behaviourally based addiction disorder (see DSM-IV-TR). Young (1998) used the DSM-IV-TR criteria for pathological gambling as the basis for creating an 8-item screener for Internet Addiction which was later expanded to the 20-item version of the InAT that is used today (Faraci, Craparo, Messina, & Severino, 2013).

It appears the first external research team that tested the psychometric properties of the InAT was in 2004 (Widyanto & McMurran, 2004) and there have been several studies since that have examined the translation and validation of the InAT in other countries (for example, the IAT has been examined in Poland, Bangladesh, Turkey, Spain, Greece, India etc.) as well as a short version and adolescent version (IAT-A). Recent research shows that the InAT has appropriate convergent and discriminant validity (for example, the InAT showed good convergent and discriminant validity with the Revised Chen Internet Addiction Scale, with depressed subjects and with actual internet related behaviours, such as time spent online and reasons for usage; Servidio, 2017). However, several studies have also indicated some issues with reliability (lower reliability in adolescent populations compared to college populations; Frangos, Frangos. C., & Sotiropoulos, 2012) and one study demonstrated that the InAT was not sensitive enough to effectively discriminate between pathological and non-pathological internet users in a clinical population (Kim, Park, Ryu, Yu, & Ha, (2013). Factor analysis continues to show discrepancy between research teams, with some teams extracting from 1 up to 6 factors (Jelenchick, 2012) although 2 factors tends to be common (Faraci, 2013).

It is likely though that some of the issues with the psychometric properties  of the IAT pertain to the conceptual difficulties with Internet Addiction (whether Internet addiction is its own disorder or whether the  internet is just the platform that allows for other pathological disorders to exist, such as online gambling) and with the changing face and social use of the internet in general (Servidio, 2017). Keeping this mind, caution is advised with respect to using the InAT for any diagnostic purposes in the adolescent or clinical population (until the InAT is subjected to further research) although it may be a useful screener tool for the general community/university population to identify  problematic internet usage.


1. Do you find that you stay online longer than you intended?
2. Do you neglect household chores to spend more time online?
3. Do you prefer the excitement of the internet to intimacy with your partner?
4. Do you form new relationships with fellow online users?
5. Do others in your life complain to you about the amount of time you spend online?
6. Does your work suffer because of the amount of time you spend online? (E.g.‚ postponing things‚ not meeting deadlines‚ etc.)
7. Do you check your email before something else you need to do?
8. Does your job performance or productivity suffer because of the internet?
9. Do you become defensive or secretive when anyone asks you what you do online?    
10. Do you block disturbing thoughts about your life with soothing thoughts of the internet?
11. Do you find yourself anticipating when you will go online again?
12. Do you fear that life without the internet would be boring‚ empty or joyless?
13. Do you snap‚ yell‚ or act annoyed if someone bothers you while you are online?
14. Do you lose sleep due to late night internet use?
15. Do you feel preoccupied with the internet when not online‚ or fantasize about being online?
16. Do you find yourself saying "Just a few more minutes" when online?
17. Do you try to cut down on the amount of time you spend online and fail?
18. Do you try and hide how long you've been online?
19. Do you choose to spend more time online over spending time out with others?
20. Do you feel depressed‚ moody‚ or nervous when you are not online‚ and do these feelings go awhile when you go back online?
1.    How often do you find that you stay on-line longer than you intended?
2.    How often do you neglect household chores to spend more time on-line?
3.    How often do you prefer the excitement of the Internet to intimacy with your partner?
4.    How often do you form new relationships with fellow on-line users?
5.    How often do others in your life complain to you about the amount of time you spend on-line?
6.    How often do your grades or school work suffer because of the amount of time you spend on-line?
7.    How often do you check your e-mail before something else that you need to do?
8.    How often does your job performance or productivity suffer because of the Internet?
9.    How often do you become defensive or secretive when anyone asks you what you do on-line?
10.How often do you block out disturbing thoughts about your life with soothing thoughts of the Internet?
11.How often do you find yourself anticipating when you will go on-line again?
12.How often do you fear that life without the Internet would be boring‚ empty‚ and joyless?
13.How often do you snap‚ yell‚ or act annoyed if someone bothers you while you are on-line?
14. How often do you lose sleep due to late-night log-ins?
15.. How often do you feel preoccupied with the Internet when off-line‚ or fantasize about being on-line?
16. How often do you find yourself saying "just a few more minutes" when on-line?
17. How often do you try to cut down the amount of time you spend on-line and fail?
18.How often do you try to hide how long you've been on-line?
19. How often do you choose to spend more time on-line over going out with others?
20. How often do you feel depressed‚ moody‚ or nervous when you are off-line‚ which goes away once you are back on-line?
Fatemeh Bidi [[email protected]]
http://www.asriran.com/fa/news/184566/%D8%AA%D8%B3%D8%AA-%D9%85%DB%8C%D8%B2%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%AA%DB%8C%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8%A8%D9%87-%D8%A7%DB%8C%D9%86%D8%AA%D8%B1%D9%86%D8%AA!.
Rarely or never‚ Every once in a while‚ Sometimes‚ Often‚ Always –OR-  Rarely‚ Occasionally‚ Frequently‚ Often‚ Always.
20 - 49 points: You are an average on-line user. You may surf the Web a bit too long at times‚ but you have control over your usage.
50 -79 points: You are experiencing occasional or frequent problems because of the Internet. You should consider their full impact on your life.
80 - 100 points: Your Internet usage is causing significant problems in your life. You should evaluate the impact of the Internet on your life and address the problems directly caused by your Internet usage.
After you have identified the category that fits your total score‚ look back at those questions for which your scored a 4 or 5. Did you realize this was a significant problem for you? For example‚ if you answered 4 (often) to Question #2 regarding your neglect of household chores‚ were you aware of just how often your dirty laundry piles up or how empty the refrigerator gets?
Say you answered 5 (always) to Question #14 about lost sleep due to late-night log-ins. Have you ever stopped to think about how hard it has become to drag yourself out of bed every morning? Do you feel exhausted at work? Has this pattern begun to take its toll on your body and your overall health?

Kimberly S. Young. 2009. Internet Addiction: The Emergence of a New Clinical Disorder. Cyberpsychol & Behav 1(3); 237-244.

Laura Widyanto & Mary McMurran. 2004. The Psychometric Properties of the Internet Addiction Test. Cyberpsychol & Behav 7(4); 443-50.