Arman Mahmood

Arman Mahmood


Dr. Benjamin Johnson


College of Journalism and Communications


Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience





Academic Awards

Lombardi & Stamps Scholarship, Presidential Scholarship, Dean's List



Research Interests

Social Media, Advertising, Mental Health, Attention Span

Hobbies and Interests

Exercising, Sudoku, Video games, Hanging out with friends

Research Project

TikTok, Sponsorship, and Attention

The advent of TikTok use over the past couple years by young adults is not a unique phenomena – many different social media platforms pop up from year to year and attract a large userbase before eventually falling into disuse. However, between the addictive, short-form media format and the aggressive algorithm that TikTok employs to hook its users, it seems like TikTok is here to stay. The study that Dr. Benjamin Johnson and I propose to do aims to identify the link between TikTok, interactions with sponsored content (advertisements, brand deals, product placement, etc.) and psychological factors like self-esteem, self-control, boredom, materialism, mental health, and consumer behavior. To provide a picture of cause and effect (e.g., does impulsiveness lead to TikTok use, or does TikTok heighten impulsiveness?), a longitudinal survey will examine user experiences with this popular and unique app. A multi-wave panel study with a convenience sample of young adults will be used to test hypotheses.