Preference for multitasking, technological dependency, student metacognition, & pervasive technology use: An experimental intervention

Colin A. Terry, Punya Mishra, Cary J. Roseth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Technology-enabled multitasking has garnered increased critical attention in recent years. Research on multitasking in educational environments commonly assert a multitude of undesired outcomes such as heightened distraction, hindered learning, and hampered productivity. This study considers critical research gaps related to media multitasking, including student metacognitive awareness. In addition, this study tested a commonly suggested, yet previously untested, educational response wherein students are made aware of the problematic phenomenon, with the aim of mitigating the pervasive behavior. Findings suggest that student technology use is highly attributed to their anxiety without technology and dependency on technology, rather than any actual preference for multitasking. Metacognitive awareness was inconclusively correlated with rampant technology use; however, those who exhibited higher behavioral management tendencies demonstrated greater control of their technology use. And while the quasi-experimental awareness intervention failed to shift student media multitasking behavior, promising areas for future research were illuminated through the qualitative analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-251
Number of pages11
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Volume65
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Attention
  • Attitude
  • Metacognition
  • Multitasking
  • Technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Psychology(all)

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