Date of Award
Doctor of Education
Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology
Dr. Robert Betz
Dr. John Geisler
Dr. Robert Brashear
Research suggests that increased hours of television (more than 20-30 hours a week) viewing has a negative impact on the academic performance (as measured by grade point average (GPA)) of elementary aged school children (Fetler, 1984; Winn, 1985). With the reported increased hours of TV viewing time over the past three decades (Ploughoft & Anderson, 1981; Winn, 1985) and the increased proliferation of cable TV and video cassette recorders, it has been projected that the average elementary school aged child will spend more than one-third of his or her waking hours watching television (Winn, 1985).
Although research (Mendelson, cited in Crook, 1991) has advocated a reduction of television viewing time to 1 to 2 hours a day for both the Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) child and for the non-ADD child, no empirical studies could be found which supported the monitoring of television viewing by children diagnosed primarily with ADD.
Therefore, this study was conducted because it was hypothesized that ADD children watched more TV per week than non-ADD children. Moreover, it was hypothesized that the ADD children performed at a lower academic level (as measured by GPA) in part because of their increased hours of television viewing.
When the parental surveys of 31 ADD children aged 6-9 were compared with the parental surveys of 30 non-ADD children aged 6-9 from the west Michigan area, it was found that the ADD children watched more than twice as much TV per weekday than the non-ADD children.
It was concluded that there was a significant relationship between the hours of TV viewed for the ADD children per day (4.70) and their academic performance as measured by their GPA (1.00). Such a relationship could not be soundly concluded from this study for the group of non-ADD children, although they did have a high GPA average (3.60) and low amounts of TV viewed per day (1.53).
Results obtained did clarify, to a significant degree, the relationship between hours of TV watched per week and the predicted poor academic performance of elementary aged (6-9 years) ADD school children. Recommendations were suggested for additional studies and for practitioners to be aware of this study's implications.
Schaefer, Wayne G., "The Effects of Television Viewing on the Academic Performance of Elementary School Children with Attention Deficit Disorder" (1991). Dissertations. 2045.