UCL Grand Challenges


Social Media and Mental Health

This project aims to explore how autistic people can thrive online using participatory methods.

Social media and mental health

1 March 2024


Grant: Grand Challenges Mental Health and Wellbeing Network Building
Year awarded: 2023-24
Amount awarded: £2,475.00


Dr Marc Tibber, Brain Sciences

Dr Georgia Pavlopoulou, Research Department of Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology, Brain Sciences

There is increasing interest in the impact of social media on mental health, with evidence suggesting a small but consistent link between higher social media use and poorer mental health. The role of social media in the mental health of autistic individuals is under-researched, despite elevated levels of mental health issues and a preference for online communication within this group. To address this, a team of researchers are running a Delphi method study to identify research priorities and methods, developing resources to help autistic people use social media in beneficial ways. 

Outputs and Impact

Significant progress includes: 

  • Clarification of the methodology and survey content. 

  • Submission and revision of the ethics proposal. 

  • Preparation of materials for participant recruitment and debriefing. 

  • Initial planning for meetings with the participation group. 

The project is on track, pending final ethics approval.