Title

Age, ethnicity, and socioeconomic patterns in early computer use: A national survey

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2005

Division

School of Education Counseling and Psychology in Education

Keywords

computers, infants, preschoolers, ethnicity, gender

Disciplines

Cognitive Psychology | Developmental Psychology | Educational Psychology

Abstract

Parents were interviewed about the media habits of their 6-month to 6-year-old children. For children who had used computers, linear increases in computer usage occurred across this age range with a shift from using a computer on a parent’s lapat aboutage 21/2 to autonomous computer and mouse use at about age 31/2. There were almost no gender differences in early computer patterns. Families with higher incomes and higher education levels were more likely to own computers and to have Internet access from home. Latino families were least likely to own a computer; Latino and African American families were less likely than Caucasian families to have Internet access at home. Parents perceived computers favorably for children’s learning. No relationship was found between the frequency with which children play computer games and the likelihood that they can read, but increased nongame computer use was associated with increased likelihood of reading.

Publication Title

American Behavioral Scientist

Volume

48

First Page

590

Last Page

607

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0002764204271508

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