How Media Affects Children
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How Media Affects Children

July 26, 2010
Today's children experience many kinds of media at early ages. Scientific research provides insights into the effects of media--both good and bad--on children and teenagers.

A consortium of researchers reported that very young children's interactions with TV and computers are a mixed bag of opportunities and cautions, while teenagers' Internet use has changed so much that the myths of several years ago need to be debunked.

Amy Sussman, program manager for the Developmental and Learning Program at the National Science Foundation (NSF), which funded the research, says that reaping the benefits of various media while avoiding pitfalls is no easy task. Parents and policymakers need to inform their decisions about whether and how to guide their childrens media use through scientific knowledge. Different developmental stages call for different strategies. These and other research studies can help create needed guidance for children at all ages.

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