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    All screen and no play?A mixed methods approach to screen time in middle childhood.

    Dobutowitsch, Mira (2019) All screen and no play?A mixed methods approach to screen time in middle childhood. PhD thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    Children’s engagement with screens and digital devices at home is often associated with negative outcomes. However, there is increasing criticism that most claims of detrimental effects of screen time are not supported, that research in the area often lacks rigour in design, and fails to account for contextual factors. Furthermore, given the positive discourse around technology in educational settings, parents are faced with juxtaposed messages.Drawing on Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological framework (Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 2006) and Gibson’s (1979) concept of affordances, the aim of the mixed methodsproject was to investigate the relationship between screen time and socio-emotional outcomes, as well as explore how parents navigatetheir children’s screen time. Secondary analyses of Growing Up in Ireland (GUI) data were conducted to explore children’s time use, and investigate the relationship between screen time and scores on the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire and the Piers-Harris Self-Concept Scale at age nine and again at age 13, whilst also considering important mediating factors. A qualitative study explored parents’ concerns, strategies, and decision-making in relation to screen time. GUI data showed that at age nine,low screen time was associated with fewer behavioural difficulties for girls, but high screen time was associated with a more favourable self-concept for boys. At age 13, low screen time is associated with a more favourable self-concept for girls. However, effect sizes were small. The qualitative study suggests that screen time access, parental rules, and strategies to balance concerns varied significantly across families.Overall, screen time only had a weak relationship with socio-emotional outcomes. Outcomes were best explained by factors related to children’s characteristics, and the parent-child relationship. Parents were concerned about potentially negative impacts of screen time and their strategies to navigate screen time were tailored around their own attitudes and values, but were not impervious to external influence.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
    Keywords: mixed methods approach; screen time; middle childhood;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Education
    Item ID: 16876
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2023 16:21
      Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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