TOP > Data > Digital Media and Children > [Survey of Media Use by Children and Parents] 2-4. Awareness of Applications and Software

Data

[Survey of Media Use by Children and Parents] 2-4. Awareness of Applications and Software


Mothers' responses showed awareness of the potential of apps. Regarding educational apps/software, children "can enrich knowledge," "can enjoy singing and dancing" and "can develop self-expression through craft and drawing" in descending order of higher percentage. At the same time, however, mothers showed concern about the disadvantages of educational and game apps/software such as "damage to eyesight and health", "addiction" and "excessive reliance on media after children grow up." These results indicate that mothers feel both possibilities and concerns regarding children's use of apps/software.

Mothers feel they can benefit from apps/software as "children can enrich their knowledge" by using educational apps or "children can enjoy singing and dancing" by using game apps

What do mothers think about the children's use of apps/software? We asked the respondents (including those whose children do not use them) about the use of educational apps/software for kana (Japanese syllabaries,) picture books, numbers, English and drawing as well as game apps/software. Table 2-4-1 shows some differences between responses for educational apps and those for game apps. In descending order of the sum of both answers "very true" or "somewhat true" to the questions regarding educational apps, 81.5% of mothers feel that apps "can enrich their knowledge," 77.1% of them feel they "can enjoy singing and dancing," and 68.7% of them feel they "can develop self-expression through craft and drawing." In addition, more than 30% of mothers chose "beneficial for school lessons," "improves concentration" and "can learn social etiquette and manners." These results indicate that mothers highly value the advantages of educational apps and software.

Among the mothers who answered "very true" or "somewhat true" to the questions regarding game apps, 55.3% of them chose "can enjoy singing and dancing," 39.7% of them chose "can play with friends," 38.0% of them chose "can develop self-expression through craft and drawing." Unlike the case of educational apps, more than 30% of mothers chose "can play with friends." This indicates that mothers consider the game apps as tools for enjoying singing and dancing or playing with friends, rather than a learning tool or a useful tool after entering schools.

The responses of mothers who chose "very true" by age reveal a disparity among the answers of different generations. For educational apps, 33.5% of mothers aged 29 years or younger and 17.6% of those aged 40 years or older chose "can enjoy singing and dancing," while 26.9% of mothers aged 29 years or younger and 14.7% of those aged 40 years or older chose "can develop self-expression through craft and drawing." As you can see, the percentage of younger mothers who recognize the above advantages is 10 percentage-points higher than that of older mothers. This indicates that younger mothers positively recognize the potential of new digital media in some categories.

Table 2-4-1 Advantages and disadvantages of apps/software

digital_2015_11_01.jpg

Mothers see many disadvantages in the use of educational and game apps/software by children

How do mothers perceive the disadvantages of children using educational and game apps/software? Table 2-4-1 shows that, among the mothers who answered "very true" or "somewhat true" to the questions regarding the disadvantages of using educational apps, in descending order, 86.0% of them chose "damage to eyesight and health," 74.6% of them chose "addiction," and 67.7% of them chose "excessive reliance on media after children grow up." For game apps, 90.9% of them chose "damage to eyesight and health," 84.6% of them chose "addiction," and 77.4% of them chose "excessive reliance on media after children grow up," a slightly higher ratio of answers compared to that of educational apps, but also in the same order. The above answer options are mostly the same as those which are mentioned in "concerns about digital media use" in Section 3. Mothers expressed concern that digital media can be dangerously addictive for children, causing such negative effects as damage to children's eyesight and excessive reliance on media by watching or using media tools for long hours.

Furthermore, more than 50% of mothers chose "unbalanced lifestyle with less outdoor play" due to the long use of educational apps (59.1%) and game apps (71.0%) and "disturbs daily life patterns" due to the long use of educational apps (50.6%) and game apps (68.9%). Likewise, more than 50% of mothers see a disadvantage in the use of media tools, such as "reduces parent-child communication" through the use of educational apps (54.3%) and game apps (65.9%).

As for disadvantages related to digital content, more than 50% of mothers cited "promotes passivity" due to the use of educational apps (55.8%) and the use of game apps (61.1%), while more than 30% of mothers are concerned about the "use of foul language and attitude" through the use of educational apps (33.3%) and the use of game apps (51.5%).

The survey results revealed that the majority of the respondents recognized various disadvantages in both educational and game apps/software. In particular, many of the mothers were worried about potential damage to children's health, since children using digital media are likely to engage in sedentary behavior indoors. At the same time, however, the advantages of digital media were also cited in some categories. Our future challenge is, therefore, to find a way to effectively utilize these advantages within each family.

Write a comment


*CRN reserves the right to post only those comments that abide by the terms of use of the website.

Facebook

About CRN

About Child Science

Links

CRN Child Science Exchange Program in Asia

Japan Today

Honorary Director's Blog

Recommended