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The Effects of Electronic Media on the Cognitive, Social, and Emotional Development of Children and Adolescents

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May 15-16, 2006


American children are immersed in an electronic environment yet there is not a clear understanding of how this level of media exposure impacts children’s cognitive, social, and emotional development. The purpose of this state-of-the-knowledge conference is to assemble a trans-disciplinary group of experts to discuss media exposure and its effects on children in the home, school, and community. Conference participants with expertise from diverse fields including developmental psychology, communication, pediatrics, family studies, and educational technology will contribute to the identification of research gaps and areas for future research agendas.

Research questions of interest include the following:

  • How does use of and exposure to electronic media influence cognitive, social, and emotional development in children and adolescents?
  • What are the roles of content, context, dose, and duration of media exposure/use?
  • What roles do family structure, parental monitoring, out-of-home care, schools, and other contextual factors play in the relationship between media use/exposure and children’s development?
  • What are the best ways to measure children’s exposure/use of electronic media and are there simple estimates or measures that are reliable indicators?
  • What research gaps exist in the area of media effects and how should they be addressed?
  • What are the effects of media exposure on children’s developing brains, including neuronal development, cognition, memory, emotion, and executive function?

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Last Reviewed: 11/30/2012
Vision National Institutes of Health Home BOND National Institues of Health Home Home Storz Lab: Section on Environmental Gene Regulation Home Machner Lab: Unit on Microbial Pathogenesis Home Division of Intramural Population Health Research Home Bonifacino Lab: Section on Intracellular Protein Trafficking Home Lilly Lab: Section on Gamete Development Home Lippincott-Schwartz Lab: Section on Organelle Biology