Digital media usage and the development of inhibition in young children
LE3 .A278 2016
Master of Science
Although the use of technology has increased in children, little research has explored the potential impact it has on the development of attention. The current study investigated the potential relationship between digital media usage (television and mobile devices) and the development of inhibition in young children. Children aged 4 to 8 years completed child-friendly versions of two colour naming tasks: the object Stroop task and the emotion Stroop task. The object Stroop task measures interference caused by pairing common objects with inconsistent colours. The emotion Stroop task measures interference caused by emotion content. Media use was assessed using a questionnaire filled out by parents. Results showed a significant positive relationship between exposure to mobile devices and processing positive emotion; higher exposure to mobile devices was related to slower reaction times to happy faces. These preliminary findings suggest a potential relationship between digital media use and inhibition in young children, at least for emotion stimuli. Future research is needed to explore the extent and specific nature of this relationship.
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