Understanding Parents’ Perceptions of Communication Technology Use
 
Abstract
This study examined parents’ perception of their children’s communication technology use. Participants were 421 parents from a city in Southeast Texas. The study explored parents’ perceptions of their communication technology skills compared to their children’s skills. The study also investigated parents’ areas of concern for their children’s technology use, current solutions parents are using to protect their children, and parents’ perspectives about the level of benefit and risk of communication tools and environments. According to descriptive data, parents rate their communication technology skills higher than the children’s skills on all of the technologies explored with the exception of online games. Moreover, parents are most concerned with their children’s safety and employ a variety of methods to protect their children from online threats. Lastly, parents’ view communication technologies as somewhat risky and of little benefit to the child. Parents' acknowledge there are risks and benefits of communication technologies to their children. A better understanding of parents’ perceptive of communication technologies is only the beginning to discover how parents’ are monitoring their children’s technologies and the safeguards parents are taking to ensure their children have a positive and safe experience.
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