23 Aug 2019
Social media allows us to be constantly connected with families and friends. However, such endless connectivity on the virtual world can have detrimental effects on children and adolescents in their formative years.
This sobering message was emphasised by Associate Professor Julie Bowker from the University at Buffalo (UB)’s Department of Psychology on 13 July 2019 at a public lecture at SIM. Titled ‘When is it OK to be Alone?: Solitude, Well-being, and Culture’, Dr Bowker’s lecture addressed the potential issues that youths face in a hyper-connected world. These include having to sacrifice solitude and face-to-face peer interactions, which are crucial components for self-reflection and the development of self-identity and social skills.
A visiting faculty member since 2008, Dr Bowker is currently teaching a course on adolescent development to SIM-UB students. Her recent writings were featured in academic journals such as Developmental Psychology and the Journal of Early Adolescence.
Dr Bowker’s research focuses on the roles that strong interpersonal relationships play in mental,
social and emotional development during late childhood and early adolescence.
This lecture is the second one organised as part of a series of events celebrating the 15th year of partnership between SIM and UB in offering undergraduate programmes in Singapore. To commemorate the anniversary, SIM and UB also launched a new undergraduate degree programme in Geographic Information Science
(GIScience) with a public lecture on GIScience in May
. SIM is UB's largest overseas partner, with more than 5,000 alumni in Singapore.