More than a Babysitter? Examining Perceptions and Practices around Educational Digital Media Use in High-Risk Families
Shayl Griffith

About the research


NAEd/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship

Award Year



Florida International University

Primary Discipline

The mobile technology revolution rapidly and profoundly changed the home learning environments of young children and introduced countless potential new child-related uses of media and media devices. While research has examined patterns and predictors of television use in families with young children, studies investigating mobile device and interactive media use specifically are needed. To promote positive media habits for families with higher risk of problematic media use, knowledge about how newer media technologies are used in high-risk families and factors that predict these patterns of use is essential. The proposed study will examine, using in-depth interviews and survey data, the use of mobile devices and interactive digital media in a sample of low-income, ethnic and racial minority families with young children. Specifically, the study will examine parent perceptions about potential harms and benefits of mobile media use in young children, and the relation of parent perceptions to child-related media practices. This study will also examine how parenting skills and environmental stressors may moderate the relationship between parents� beliefs about mobile media and their child-related media practices, with the aim of informing interventions to promote best practices around interactive screen media use at home.
About Shayl Griffith
Shayl Griffith, PhD, is an incoming Assistant Professor in the Department of Counseling, Recreation, and School Psychology at Florida International University (FIU). She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology in 2018 from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and completed her postdoctoral training at the Center for Children and Families at Florida International University (FIU). Dr. Griffith?s research interests center on the behavioral and academic functioning of at-risk young children, with special interests in early identification and intervention in problems of development, parent-child interactions, child media use, and the use of mobile technology to support interventions. Her work has been supported by the UMass Center for Research on Families and a dissertation fellowship from the National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation.

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