Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Texting, social networking and other media use linked to poor academic performance

Date:
April 11, 2013
Source:
Lifespan
Summary:
Freshmen women spend nearly half their day -- 12 hours -- engaged in some form of media use, particularly texting, music, the Internet and social networking.

The widespread use of media among college students -- from texting to chatting on cell phones to posting status updates on Facebook -- may be taking an academic toll, say researchers with The Miriam Hospital's Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine.

According to a new study, freshmen women spend nearly half their day -- 12 hours -- engaged in some form of media use, particularly texting, music, the Internet and social networking. Researchers found media use, in general, was associated with lower grade point averages (GPAs) and other negative academic outcomes. However, there were two exceptions: newspaper reading and listening to music were actually linked to a positive academic performance.

The findings, reported online by the journal Emerging Adulthood, offer some new insight into media use in early adulthood, a time when many young people are living independently for the first time and have significant freedom from parental monitoring.

"Most research on media use and academics has focused on adolescents, rather than new college students, or has only examined a few forms of media. So we were curious about the impact of a wider range of media, including activities like social networking and texting that have only become popular in recent years," said lead author Jennifer L. Walsh, PhD, of The Miriam Hospital's Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine. "We also wanted to know how media use related to later school performance, since there aren't many longitudinal studies looking at media use and academics."

Walsh and colleagues surveyed 483 first-year college women at a northeast university at the start of their freshmen year. Researchers asked students about their use of 11 forms of media (television, movies, music, surfing the Internet, social networking, talking on a cell phone, texting, magazines, newspapers, non-school-related books and video games) on the average weekday and weekend day during the previous week. In January and June, participants reported their GPAs for the fall and spring semester, and they also completed surveys about academic confidence, behaviors and problems.

The study yielded some interesting findings, Walsh said. In addition to data suggesting that college women use nearly 12 hours of media per day, researchers found that cell phones, social networking, movie/television viewing and magazine reading were most negatively associated with later academic outcomes, after accounting for their fall academic performance.

But exactly how are media use and academic performance linked? "We found women who spend more time using some forms of media report fewer academic behaviors, such as completing homework and attending class, lower academic confidence and more problems affecting their school work, like lack of sleep and substance use," said Walsh, adding that the study was one of the first to explore mechanisms of media effects on academic outcomes.

Researchers also believe the findings demonstrate the central role of social media in the lives of college students, and suggest these forms of media are used more on campus than off.

"Given the popularity of social networking and mobile technology, it seems unlikely that educators will be able to reduce students' use of these media forms," said Walsh. "Instead, professors might aim to integrate social media into their classrooms to remind students of assignments, refer them to resources and connect them with their classmates."

Academic counselors might also consider assessing college students' media use and encouraging them to take breaks from media, particularly while in class, studying or completing assignments, the researchers also noted.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Lifespan. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Lifespan. "Texting, social networking and other media use linked to poor academic performance." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411131755.htm>.
Lifespan. (2013, April 11). Texting, social networking and other media use linked to poor academic performance. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411131755.htm
Lifespan. "Texting, social networking and other media use linked to poor academic performance." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411131755.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — Researchers say women who diet at a young age are at greater risk of developing harmful health habits, including eating disorders and alcohol abuse. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) — If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) — Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) — A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins