Cell phones are a great invention and a popular way to communicate—half of all Americans and Europeans use one. They allow us to work on the go and stay in touch. When put in the hands of a teenager, however, they can have some effects of which adults should be aware.
It is a common sight – cell phones (mobile phones) in the hands of people, especially teenagers. Literature has provided in-depth evidence of the uses, advantages, disadvantages, impact, consequences and concerns about the use of mobile phones. Why teenagers fancy this device, is an interesting observation where the experts attach its significance to teenagers’ identity factor. The usage of mobile phones has re-shaped, re-organised and altered several social facets. Particularly focussing on teenagers’ mobile phone usage, literature has provided evidence of them being used for both positive purposes and negative reasons. Is the gap between uses and negative impact widening? Are consequences and concerns superseding positive uses? How do parents/caregivers perceive the overall usage of mobile phones by their teenagers? Are there any solutions, possibilities and avenues to address such problems? These are the basic queries that drive this study. PACG is the acronym for parents/caregivers used in this document. Objectives:
This study is centred around parents/caregivers’ (PACG) perceptions of their teenagers’ mobile phone usage: • To gain an overall understanding of teenagers’ mobile phone usage (positive purposes and negative impacts) • To understand the influence of texting on teenagers (such as text language on proper language, text messaging on communication skills) • To understand the effects on teenagers’ physical (such as driving, health) and psychological (such as bullying, un-monitored time usage, family time) safety issues. Methods:
A mixed methods approach was employed to explore the research problem. Quantitative data was collected through questionnaires (18 closed and 02 open-ended questions) and qualitative data through interviews (approximately 21 questions). The survey and interview participants were parents/caregivers of teenagers aged 13 to 19 years irrespective of their teenagers’ mobile phone possessions. They were broadly divided into seven ethnic groups. 115 PACG completed the questionnaires through survey and 07 participants from the survey sample were interviewed (one from each ethnic group). Results:
Teenagers possessing mobile phone/s were 96.5% (n=111). A further breakup of age groups indicated that all the 17-19 olds had mobile phones. In addition, not possessing mobile phone/s is higher in the age bracket 15-16 year olds when compared to 13-14 olds. Chi-Square tests established significance between independent and dependent variables, in the following relationships. The results are briefly mentioned. • ‘Gender’ with ‘teenagers sharing with PACG, if bullied: A high percentage of PACG said that their teenagers share with them if they are bullied.
It was also evident that girls share more with PACG, if bullied, than boys do • ‘Ethnicity’ with ‘Interruption of personal time with PACG’: A high percentage of PACG said that their personal time is to ‘some extent’ interrupted due to social bonding enabled by their teenagers’ mobile phone usage • ‘Ethnicity’ with ‘PACG feeling secure with teenagers’ un-monitored times usage’: A high percentage of PACG said that they feel secure with their teenagers’ mobile phone usage during un-monitored times • ‘Ethnicity’ with ‘PACG feeling using mobile phones while driving is risky’: A high percentage of PACG said that using mobile phones while driving is risky • ‘Ethnicity’ with ‘PACG feeling to ban mobile phone use while driving’: A high percentage of PACG supported a ban to use • ‘Ethnicity’ with ‘PACG feeling to have an age limit to possess a mobile phone’: More than fifty percentage of PACG supported a minimum age limit for possessing a mobile phone either by saying ‘yes’ or ‘probably’. Conclusion:
Parents/caregivers of this study express both positive and negative impact towards teenagers’ mobile phone usage. On a positive note, PACG perceive that mobile phones are very useful devices for communication and co-ordination of activities. They also find that they are compulsory as they are used as safety devices especially in emergencies. Voice and text features are considered as the basic required facilities in teenagers’ mobile phones by PACG. On the negative side, PACG express that teenagers are addicted and obsessed with texting, while some of the PACG feel that it distracts the teenagers from their study time and other important activities. Some PACG hold the service providers responsible for this because of texting plans. Bullying and abusive messages have been perceived as the major problem mediated by mobile phones.
PACG express that teenagers with their mobile phones are out of control for them. They also add that teenagers lose control over the information enabled by their mobile phones. Every interviewed PACG expressed concerns on internet access via teenagers’ mobile phones. The overall findings from this study reveal that parents/caregivers’ perceptions of teenagers’ mobile phone usage are not satisfactory. Although they express a mixed opinion, they lean towards negative impacts. A very high number of interview participants expressed the view that negative impacts outweighing positive purposes with teenagers’ mobile phone usage. This further leads to recommendations from PACG on proper usage, future research, avenues and possibilities to implement solutions for problems. PACG mainly perceive that educating teenagers (on consequences and tackling issues) and providing mobile phones to teenagers from the age of 14 years (the legal age to stay home unsupervised and mature enough) will help in ameliorating the negative impacts. In addition, PACG support to ban using mobile phones while driving.
These are the outcomes of the study Cell phones and mobile phones are the main invention of modern technology and also have historically been given to human beings to send messages, entertain and ultimately help them make life easier. Also, cell phones have become one of the fastest growing communication technologies. Although mobile phones have greatly facilitated people’s lives, people more and more depend on using cell phones and cannot leave it frequently, especially young people nowadays. There is no denying that cell phones bring a wide variety of benefits to teens, but it also have many negative side effects to teens no matter for their health, study habits and behaviors. Therefore, I believe that the usage of mobile phones should be limited to a wide range of teenagers because the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. To begin with, if we confine teens to use cell phones will make their campus and social life become inconvenient because cell phones allow teenagers to keep in touch not only with their friends, but also with family members, schools and emergency services.
Dr. Stefania Kalogeraki points out “mobile phones provide a direct communicative channel between teenagers and peer groups, parents and children; therefore the device enhances social interactions and bonding with peers and family”. Despite of the fact that mobile phones can be the excellent tools to stay in touch with people; it also can be a weapon for young people to hurt themselves. Cell phone becomes an addition for a large amount of teenagers around the globe, and its use by this age group has many disadvantages with short-term and long-term consequences. It also will cause lots of jumbo problems for youngsters without proper supervision and responsible use. For their health, radiation, this is the biggest issue for young people who use cell phones everywhere, every day and even every moment. Dr… Cell phones are there to make communication and life much easier, but people engage regularly in multi tasking when they are behind the wheels.
“Cell phones are a great invention and a popular way to communicate—half of all Americans and Europeans use one. They allow us to work on the go and stay in touch, however there are ways in which cell phones can affect teenagers” (Reynolds, 2012). It is important to understand the effects because although “parents see … cell phones role as a mixed blessing for their teenagers, it can bring distressing things into their lives’’ (Lenhart, Madden, Smith, Purcell, Zickuhr & Raine, 2011). What are possible effects of cell phones on teenagers? There are several ways in which cell phones can affect teenagers, such as educational, social and health, which can all be both positive and negative. Social effects of cell phones can be sex-ting, cyberbullying and social networking. Educational effects are effects relating school and education of a teenager. Health effects are health risks and benefits for a teenager while using a cell phone. There are many different effects of cell phones on teenagers but the most important ones that are mainly looked at are educational, social and health. This essay will cover the positive and negative educational, social and health effects of cell phones.
Positive Effects of Mobile Phones
Mobile Phone is the best way to communicate. We can stay in touch with our loved ones anywhere, anytime, just because of mobile phones. All thanks to their small size, lightweight, that make them portable. Entertainment
Life is nothing less than a hell without any entertainment in it. Thanks to mobile phones that let us entertain while on the go. The mobile phones getting launched nowadays, come with super impressive features related to entertainment. Mobile manufacturers know it pretty well that entertainment is demand of today. This is the reason why mobile phones are nothing less than a complete portable entertainment devices. Useful in Studies and Business
Mobile phones are quite useful in studies and business. In both fields, the mobile phone has become like compulsory gadget. Students can access Internet on their mobile phones while on the go, and thus can get knowledge of any topic they wish to. The business persons can keep updated with the markets up and downs, can stay in touch with their employees and clients. Work as Boon in Emergencies
Just consider any emergency situation in which you want to talk to your friend, relative or anyone else? Mobile Phone is what works as boon in such situations. You might have faced any emergency situation in which mobile phone helped you, have you? Whether you have faced it or not, it’s quite easy to understand the role of mobile phones in emergencies. Boon is what we can call the mobile phones in such situations, right? Negative Effects of Mobile Phones
Bad Impact on Studies
The students are just addicted to mobile phones. They can be seen playing games, chatting, and talking to their friends on their mobile phones most of the times. This is the reason why they don’t get time for studies. In fact, students are more interested in wasting their time on mobile phones, rather than spending it on studying.
Accident and Health Issues
Most of the accidents that happen daily arise because of mobile phones. The mobile phones have resulted in dangerous driving, whose direct impact can be seen in increasing no. of accidents. Apart from accidents, mobile phones have bad impact on health as well. Several researches conducted by the health experts have proved the bad impact of mobile phones on health. These are the positive and negative impacts of mobile phones on our lives. These is no doubt mobile is a necessity these days, but we should take care of the negative points too and use this technology accordingly.
the influence of mobile technology on our lives is huge and even greater on teenagers. In the age in which they’re developing as individuals all that mobile phones birng leaves a strong trace on their growing up. The usage of mobile phones in their age should be controlled but they shouldn’t be discouraged from using them as they bring many benefits. Positive Effects on Teenagers
That it provides a sense of security for teenagers as well as their parents, is one of the prominent argument that is put forth by those in favor of cell phones. You will seldom come across someone who doesn’t understand the importance of cell phones or who hasn’t used his/her cell phone in times of emergency. It is this convenience of reaching each other, both for teens and their parents in emergency situations, which makes cell phone one of the most important devices in the world today. At the same time, the recently launched handsets with GPS on board are also of great help, considering that the parents can now keep a track of their child’s whereabouts by tracing his cell phone in real time. Not to forget, cell phones have also given a boost to social networking by giving teenagers the ability to reach out to more people.
Negative Effects on Teenagers
While terms like safety and connectedness may give the rising trend of cell phone use by teenagers a thumbs up, there are quite a few negative aspects of the same which have put it under the scanner of late. For instance, studies reveal that those teenagers who are addicted to cell phones are prone to sleep disturbances, anxiety and depression. Other than these psychological problems, the use of cell phones is also known to come heavy on our eyes and thumb in form of repetitive strain injuries – which are similar to those injuries that are caused as a result of using the computer for extended hours on a regular basis. Even though the researchers are divided on this, there do exist some studies which associate cell phone use with brain tumor and low sperm count. While cell phones may improve socialization for teenagers, it restricts the kind of people that these teens come across and widens the gap between them and their parents.
Distracted driving is by far the worst of the various negative effects of using a cell phone, with thousands of accidents – mainly those involving teenagers, being attributed to the very trend of attending calls or texting while driving. At the same time, the critics also highlight the fact that the device which was predominantly devised for communication and entertainment is also being used for a lot more than that of late, and accessing pornography is just one of these activities. Initially, it was the computer that was the main source of banned pornographic material for teenagers, but the advent of multimedia cell phones has made it a lot easier for these teens to access pornographic material which ethically they shouldn’t. Similarly, sexual harassment in form of sexting – sending lewd messages, or making porn videos and circulating them, is also on rise. While cyber bullying has been one of the most talked about issues related to Internet use, a relatively new but similar concept referred to as ‘text bullying’ is slowly gaining steam especially in school environment.
All these arguments and counterarguments has made this topic one of the heated subjects of debate of late. The argument on safety is no doubt justified, but that happens to be one of the very few positive effects of cell phone use – especially with the negative effects of this practice existing in plenty. Overuse or abuse of cell phones cannot be justified at all. It is this blatant abuse of cell phones by individuals belonging to the age group of 13-18 that has put it under the knife for all the wrong reasons. At the end of the day, technology can be of great help when used in correct manner – its misuse, on the other hand, can spell disaster for the user.
Physical- mobile phones can affect you, such as brain damage. Mental-mobile phones could interrupt studies.
Emotional-mobile phones could cause to phone bullying.
Social-the wrong person could get hold of mobile number, so be careful. My objectives are to gather information related to my question, to learn more about mobiles phones having an effect on our youth today. I will carry out my research by exploring the internet, researching books and I will also ask other people what they think about the question for my project. History
About Hexagonal call technology
When mobile phones were first introduced to the public they had used a technology called the hexagonal cell. Hexagonal cell had enabled the first mobile phone to work, this was developed by Bell Labs. “Hexagonal technology allowed mobile phones to be used while on the move, this was done by transmitting wireless signals from one tower to another”. This technology had enabled mobile phones to gain reception from anywhere when on the move, this works by the mobile phones transmitting phone signals to the nearest tower to you but when on the move it does this quicker and it is always moving to other towers to get good reception for phones. Good effects of using a mobile phone
It is a good idea to let a family member or friend know where you are, where you are going next, and when you arrive. This is good for teenagers to let there parents know if they are alright. Traffic Problems
A mobile phone is handy to have to inform the person that you are late and you could come to an arrangement about the time you will arrive. Accidents
When we least expect it, accidents happen. Some can be minor accidents and some can be major accidents. If the accident is bad and you need to call for help such as an ambulance to come and help you. This is a big help and you can call for help by using a mobile phone and the call is for free. Staying in Touch
Having a mobile phone gives you a privilege to stay in touch with people all over the world with a simple phone call or a text message. Teenagers are always on the phone to there friends. Finding Your Way If Lost
This can happen to any of us, a mobile phone could help us get out of this. A mobile phone will allow you to make a call of your choice and you could ring a person to help you make your way back to wherever you want to go. This is good way to help out teenagers if they don’t know there way around.
In Case of Emergency
In case of an emergency a mobile phone is really useful to have, if you are in trouble with anything use your mobile phone to call 999, this is a free call but this is only to be called if in an emergency. If teenagers carry around a mobile phone they are more likely to be safer then not having one because this mobile phone will allow them to call the police if in trouble with anything. Bad effects of using a mobile phone
Using mobile phones a lot can lead to addiction, especially to teenagers, as wasting time on communicating with people via text messages and phone calls. Auto Accidents
Talking or sending SMS text messages on a mobile phone while driving is proven to be as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol. Sleep Loss
Mobile phones cause’s teens and young adults to lose sleep, finding it difficult falling and staying asleep, this could increased stress and fatigue. Increased Expenses
Mobile phone usage is expensive and can easily lead you to keep buying credit which can cause a lot of money if addicted, this could cause high stress levels. Environmental Effects
Improper disposal of cell phones and their batteries can release harmful, non-biodegradable chemicals into the environment. Brain Damage
Some Pros Are as following:
– Parents can be in touch with their children and know their whereabouts. –
Your kids can reach you in the event of an emergency and vice versa. – If in danger, your children can reach the authorities or a medical provider. – Phones can be silenced during class or study periods and active only in appropriate places. – Students can take pictures of class projects to e-mail or show to parents. Ordinarily, parents do not see projects that are completed in groups in school. – Students can text message missed assignments to classmates that are absent. A buddy system can be put into place. – Many cell phones are equipped with calculators-plenty of new math curricula encourage the use of a calculator when problem-solving. A student should become accustomed to having a calculator handy for both homework and real life math applications. Con’s of Cellular Usage
– They disrupt the class with noises from the phone and ringtones and you can text other students during class and not pay attention. – Some groups have raised concern, for example, over the possibility of brain tumors, headaches, and dizziness. Others suggest that cell phone usage may have caused some reproductive effects in both males and females.
Courtney from Study Moose
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