I wish to thank those whose inspiration and support enabled me to complete this dissertation. Throughout the dissertation process, my faculty advisor, Dr. Krishnakumar, helped me to clarify my ideas and offered encouragement. I am also grateful to my committee members: Dr. Narine, Dr. Ramadoss, Dr. Roopranine, Dr. Jung, Dr. Kowk, and Dr. Krishnakumar. They motivated me, guided me, and provided helpful comments on my dissertation. I thank all of the study participants for their time and effort. Megan Lape, my friend, generously read my dissertation and provided feedback.
My mother, Bonghee Kim, and old brother, Hyungoo Kim, gave unflagging support and encouragement while I completed this dissertation. Throughout my life, my parents have given me assistance, pray, and love. 1 Introduction Increasing numbers of people worldwide are using the Internet (1,574,313,184 as of December 31, 2008). It has been recently reported that adolescents today spend a significant amount of time on the Internet for multiple purposes (Ito, Horst, Bittanti, Boyd, Herr-Stephenson, Lange, et al.
, 2008). Reports from the National Internet Development Agency of Korea (2007) indicate that 98. % of Korean children between the ages of 6 and 19 years use the Internet. Studies have indicated that the use of the Internet can be helpful to adolescents to complete schoolwork more effectively and efficiently (Borzekowski & Robinson, 2005; Jackson, et al. , 2006). However, other investigators have suggested direct negative effects of Internet use on academic outcomes (Choi, 2007; Sirgy, Lee, & Bae, 2006). Excessive Internet use has been associated with problems with maintaining daily routines, school performance, and family relationships (Rickert, 2001).
Much of the literature on the impact of adolescent Internet use has been descriptive (Valkenburg & Peter, 2007), and investigations on the impact of adolescent Internet use on family and youth outcomes have provided inconsistent findings (Lee & Chae, 2007). Considering the current status of research area related the impact of Internet use, the impacts of Internet use are called for. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to contribute to the field of social science by investigating associations among the prevalence of adolescent Internet use, parent-adolescent relationships, and academic/ behavioral adjustment of adolescents in South Korean families. In addition to the parent-adolescent relationship as mediators between adolescent Internet use and academic achievement, the moderating role of a child’s gender in explaining these relationships will also be examined. Adolescents’ use of the Internet varies by gender (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005) and hence it is important to test conceptual models linking adolescents’ Internet use, parent-adolescent relationships, and academic outcomes by adolescent and parent gender.
Since it is well known for Koreans to possess high expectations and aspirations for educational achievement (Chung, 1991), another goal of this study is to investigate how the effects of parental expectation functions as a unique cultural variable among the dynamics between Internet use and adolescent outcomes in Korean families. Internet Usage in South Korea Internet use among Asians has risen dramatically over the last decade (406. 1%; Internet World Stats, 2008). Based on current statistics, 34,820,000 of South Korean households have access to the Internet, which is 70. % of the population with an astounding 82. 9% growth in the period between 2000 and 2008 (Internet World Stats, 2008). The International Telecoms Union has reported that South Korea leads the world in terms of the percentage of households with high-speed broadband access 3 (Cellular News, 2008). Based on a summary report from the National Internet Development Agency of Korea (2007), the rate of internet usage for populations age six years and over is 77. 1%; consisting of 81. 6% males, and 71. 5% females.
Korea Communications Commission reported that nearly all high school and junior high school graduates in South Korea are Internet users. Also, 99. 4% of Internet users access the Internet at least once a week, spending an average of 13. 7 hours weekly on the Internet (Korea Times, 2008, September 31). South Korean youth use Internet-related technologies to play games, instant message (IM), blog, download videos and music, social network socially and shop, all of which assist them in constructing their own social communities (Jin & Chee, 2008).
For many South Korean youths, participating in online activities or communicating through online communities is a part of mainstream everyday life (Huh, 2008). The disparity in Internet access in South Korea in terms of educational settings and gender have narrowed (Park, 2001); however, according to the international surveys by the AMD Global Consumer Advisory Board (2003), Internet usage is still different dependent on the age, education, income level, region, and gender of a user. The national survey also showed that more men (74. 4%) use the Internet than women (62%).
Internet usage stands at around 70% for urban inhabitants, while only 46. 2% of people who live in rural areas (CNET News, 2004, August 11) utilize the internet. 4 Over the past two decades, the South Korean government has strongly promoted the establishment of a nationwide Internet network (National Internet Development Agency of Korea, 2006), which contributed to Korea becoming one of the most wired countries in the world and making the Korean Internet culture the barometer for other countries to track. About 90% of Korean homes are connected to VDSL, which is very high bitrate digital subscriber line.
By 2005, Korea was the first country to complete the conversion from dial-up to broadband and in 2006 it became the first country to achieve over 50% broadband saturation consisting of he world’s cheapest and fastest broadband service. Additionally in 2005, 96. 8% of South Korean mobile phones had internet access. Furthermore, 42% of the population maintain an individual blog site, over half of the population have cell phones, and 25% of the total population participates in multiplayer online gaming (Ahonen & O’ Reilly, 2007).
Also, Korea was the first country in the world to provide high-speed Internet access for every primary, junior, and high school (New York Times, 2006, April 2). In South Korea, more adolescents and young adults use the Internet than any other age group. Children under 18 years of age make up 25. 1% (12,090) of the total population in South Korea (Korean Statistical Information Service, 2004). By 2007, 98. 7% of Korean children between the ages of 6 and 19 years of age used the Internet (National Internet Development Agency of Korea, 2007).
Based on a 2003 survey, 5 over 91% of those using the Internet, use it in their homes and almost half of them have used it for more than 3 years. One third of them use it one to two hours a day, another third use it thirty minutes to one hour a day, and 16% use the Internet for two to three hours a day. Over 40% of them go online during the evening, which is between 8 p. m. to 12 a. m. , and another 40% use it from 12 p. m. to 4 p. m. The primary reasons given for Internet use are for entertainment or recreation (59. %), information seeking (55. 5%), stress reduction (46. 3%), and socialization (40. 7%). The breakdowns of activities on the Internet are: gaming (52. 8%), searching for information (34%), and socializing (64. 9%), such as chatting, e-mailing, interacting with web communities, and blogging. They use e-mails in order to keep in touch with friends (50. 6%), chat (31. 2%), and send messages when they are uncomfortable speaking face to face (31. 2%).
The world’s fastest Internet connection with over 90% Internet proliferation in Korean homes creates an ideal environment for playing online games, which a lot of South Korean kids do. Importance of the Study The Internet seems to influence quality of life through individuals’ social, consumer, leisure, economic, and community well-being (Cairncross, 1997; DiMaggio, Hargitti, Neuman, & Robinson, 2001; Israel, 2000). The Internet’s influence stems from the ease and convenience it provides to access many benefits in the context of 6 many life domains (e. g. social life, work life, leisure life, and education life). Some authors have suggested that the Internet has positive effects on academic achievement through the use of educational software, and the provision of useful information (Borzekowski & Robinson, 2005; Jackson, von Eye, Biocca, Barbatsis, Zhao, & Fitzgerald, 2006); others suggest that the Internet provides positive effects on socialization as it stimulates the closeness of existing interpersonal relationships by reducing restrictions of time and location (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001).
Yet other studies suggest that the Internet can have direct negative effects (Choi, 2007; Sirgy, Lee, & Bae, 2006), such as psychological problems including social isolation, depression, loneliness, and difficulties with time management as a result of excessive Internet use (Brenner, 1997; Kraut, Patterson, Lundmark, Kiesler, Mukhopadhyay, & Scherlis, 1998; Young, & Rodgers, 1998). Excessive use of the Internet may bring on Internet Addiction Disorder, which includes problems with daily routines, school performance, and family relationships (Rickert, 2001).
The importance of this study is follows: First, the Internet today is pervasive in the lives of individuals, institutions, and societies especially in South Korea. The last few decades have witnessed a dramatic increase in the use of the Internet and an unprecedented proliferation of computer-based technology. Computer technologies 7 and the Internet bring social changes in modern society. Since computers have become a common instrument of daily living for a vast proportion of our society, the Internet has a significant influence on quality of life (Israel, 2000).
Statistical research tell us that Internet users in the world numbered 16 million in 1996, and increased to 500 million by 2001 (Castells, 2001). For example, almost nine out of 10 American teens use the Internet, up from seven in 2000 (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2007a). However, as stated in above, South Korea is one of the fastest growing countries in Internet use. Second, adolescents are more involved in Internet activities than adults. Among Korean teens, 99. 6% of them use computers and 97. 8% use the Internet (Dong-A Il Bo, 2005, February 9).
Teens spend less time online than do adults due to a variety of reasons, such as school and after-school schedule, and sharing computers with others. However, they are more involved in the communicative aspects of the Internet than adults (Jupiter Communications, 2000a; Packel & Rainie, 2001). For example, the PEW Internet and American Life Project (2007a, 2007b, 2007c) revealed that teens far exceed adults in the intensity of using the Internet, such as instant messaging (74% of teen users as opposed to 44% of adult users), chat-rooms (55% to 26%), and gaming (66% to 34%; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001).
Another survey reported that teens 8 spend more time on the Internet each week than they do watching television (Reuters, 2003). Third, adolescents are more vulnerable than adults to the negative impacts of the Internet world (Jonson-Reid, Williams, & Webster, 2001; Otto, Greenstein, Johnson, & Friedman, 1992). Since they are immature, both physically and psychologically, they may develop more serious complications than other age groups regarding the negative impact of the Internet world (Christensen, Orzack, Babington, & Patsdaughter, 2001; Oh, 2005).
Teens may be trapped in their own cyber world, suffer from psychological pains, and finally destroy their own personal and social networks due to Internet addiction or excessive Internet use (Jonson-Reid, Williams, & Webster, 2001; Otto, Greenstein, Johnson, & Friedman, 1992). Internet addiction or excessive Internet use among adolescents varies across nations with prevalence rates of 7. 5% in Taiwan (Yen, Yen, Chen, Chen, & Ko, 2007) to 1. 1% in North Cyprus (Bayraktar & Gun, 2007) to 1. % in South Korea (Kim, Ryu, Chon, Yeun, Choi, et al. , 2006). Other challenges associated with excessive usage of the Internet include lowered concentration, lack of sleep, poor school attendance and performance, vision problems and a wide range of behavioral problems (Block, 2008; Choi, 2007). In addition, young adolescents are at high risk of being approached by online predators since they are relatively new to online activities, actively seeking attention, isolated, easily tricked by adults, and confused regarding their sexual identity (Wolak, Finkelhor, Mitchell, & Ybarra, 2008). Although they become more interested in sexuality (Ponton, & Judice, 2004), they are innocent about the sexual issues that get youth into trouble online (Wolak, Finkelhor, Mitchell, & Ybarra, 2008). Between 2000 and 2005, youth Internet users experienced aggressive sexual solicitations at a higher rate than adult users (Mitchell, Finkelhor, & Wolak, 2007).
For example, the N-JOV study found that 99% of victims of Internet-initiated sex crimes involved adolescents between the ages of 13 to 17 years of age (Wolak, Finkelhor, & Mitchell, 2004). In addition, about one third (32. 7%) of adolescent Internet users are exposed to inappropriate sexual content (Korean Educational Development Institute, 2003). In South Korea there is a growing fear that children and adolescents are becoming addicted to the Internet: 14. 4% of school children reported that they spend 4 hours or more online each day.
They also reported that they had developed stiff wrists and heard sounds from online games even when off line (PRI’s The World, 2008). A 2005 government-led study found that half a million South Koreans are clinically addicted to the Internet. Since the average Korean high school student spends about twenty-three hours each week on gaming (Kim, 2007), up to 30% of South Korean children under 18 are at risk of Internet addiction (Silverberg, 2007). According to the government’s 2006 data, approximately 2. % (210,000 children ages 6 to 19) are 10 estimated to be Internet addicts that are in need of treatment (Choi, 2007); about 80% of them may need psychotropic medications, and about 22% may require hospitalization (Ahn, 2007). In order to deal with the consequences of the proliferation of the world’s fastest Internet connection, South Korea has instituted numerous counseling and treatment programs, along with holding the first International Symposium on Internet Addiction (International Herald Tribune, 2008, August 4).
South Korea has trained 1,043 counselors and enlisted over 190 hospitals and treatment centers to help with these concerns (Ahn, 2007), and preventive measures have been introduced into primary and secondary schools (Ju, 2007). Now the Korean government is working on new rules to control the excessive use of the Internet, as well as the dissemination of false information on the Web, under a new law entitled the Cyber Defamation Law (International Herald Tribune, 2008, August 4).
Fourth, in as much as the Internet’s extensive trend is anticipated to continue, it is necessary to consider the impact and influence of Internet use on families. Families, as one of society’s primary socializing agents, may provide relatively unique insights about how the Internet is used and understood. Although the lives of adolescents outside of their families are increasing, the socializing effect of family is crucial during adolescence because adolescents project themselves into the world through 11 family interactions (Tallman, Marotz-Baden, & Pindas, 1983).
There is no doubt that parents are the primary agents of socialization for adolescents (Grusec & Davidov, 2007). Although growing peer influence and achievement of independence increases for adolescents, parental factors continue to have a significant influence on human development (Campbell, 1969) and the vast majority of young adults continue to rely on their parents for emotional support and advice (Maccoby & Martin, 1983; Merz, Schuengel, & Schulze, 2008). Finally, the dramatic increase in the use of the Internet has stimulated research on its impact on our everyday lives.
Scholars have studied the relationship of new technologies on interpersonal communication and relationships (Baym, Zhang, & Lin, 2004; Cooper, & Sportolari, 1997; Joinson, 2001; Nie, 2001; Nie, Hillygus, & Erbring, 2002; Tidwell & Walther, 2002), psychological well-being, as well as mental health (LaRose, Eastin, Gregg, 2001; Shaw & Gant, 2002), the impacts of video games (Aarsand, 2007; Tuzun, Yilmaz-Soylu, Karakus, Inal, & Kizilkaya, 2009; Willoughby, 2008), and as new learning devices (Attewell, & Battle, 1999; Hedges, Konstantopoulos, & Thoreson, 2000; Rompaey, Roe, & Struys, 2002; Shute, & Miksad 1997).
However, the existing literature on the impact of computer technologies and the Internet within the context of family relationships is very limited (Hughes & Hans, 2001; Lee & Chae, 2007; Mesch, 2006; Watt & White, 1999). 12 Considering the dominant presence of these technologies at home, a lack of study on the role of Internet use on family relationships is surprising (Mesch, 2006).
Literature Review Adolescent Internet Use Recent statistics indicate that adolescents today spend a great deal of their time on the Internet for communication, educational, and entertainment purposes (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005; Korean Educational Development Institute, 2003; Packel & Rainie, 2001). Not only do children gain knowledge and information on the Internet, they also engage with their friends in social conversation and participate in cyber communities (Ito, Horst, Bittanti, Boyd, Herr-Stephenson, Lange, et al. , 2008).
Hence, adolescents’ socialization today occurs through interactions with people from both the real and virtual worlds (McQuail, 2005). Since the Internet allows youngsters to become more open to experimentation and social exploration (Ito et al. , 2008), the Internet can be considered an important tool in adolescent socialization (Krcmar & Strizhakova, 2007). In the 1990’s, the Internet was primarily used for entertainment and information gathering (Valkenburg, & Soeters, 2001), but the function of the Internet for adolescents has changed considerably.
The majority of adolescents today use the Internet intensely to communicate with existing friends (Gross, 2004) and to make 13 new friends (Wolak, Mitchell, & Finkelhor, 2002) and in addition to their traditional face-to-face communications (Grinter & Eldridge, 2003; Grinter & Palen, 2002; Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001). Adolescents also favor instant messaging, text messaging, and social networking websites such as Facebook and MySpace as modes of communication (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005).
Some adolescents prefer digital communication over more traditional ways such as face to face interaction and telephone calls (Madden & Rainie, 2003), particularly because these are more convenient, less expensive, and faster to use than traditional technologies (Bryant, Sanders-Jackson, & Smallwood, 2006; Jin, & Chee, 2008; Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005). E-mail and text messaging allow for rapid, asynchronous communication with others, while instant messaging allows for synchronous communication among many people at once.
Adolescents use instant messaging more frequently than adults among online populations in both the U. S. and the U. K. (Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001; Livingston & Bober, 2005) and 65% of total teens population and 75% of teenage online population in the U. S. use instant messaging regularly (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005). Some gender differences (although inconsistent) on adolescents’ daily use of Internet have been reported (Haythronthwaite & Wellman, 2002; Jackson, et al. 2006; Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005). Numerous previous studies have documented that 14 overall, boys use the Internet more frequently, for longer and for a wider variety of uses than girls do (Gross, 2004; Haythronthwaite & Wellman, 2002; Morahan-Martin, 1998; Subrahmanyam, Greenfield, Kraut, & Gross, 2001). They tend to spend more time alone online than girls engaged in gaming (Jupiter Communications, 2000b; Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2001; Kraut, Scherlls, Mukhopadhyay, Manning, & Kiesler, 1996).
Girls also report using text messaging more frequently than boys (Jennings & Wartella, 2004; Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005), and are more likely to be involved in other online social interactions, such as using e-mail, than are boys (Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2001). How email is used also differs by gender. For example, girls tend to use e-mail to exchange small talk and engage in relationship-building communications and boys tend to use e-mail for instrumental communication (Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2001).
Gender differences in adolescent Internet use have also been reported across countries. For instance, males have been found to have a greater amount of frequency and motivation of Internet use with Romanian and Dutch children (Durndell & Haag, 2002; Valkenburg & Soeters, 2001), American college students (Schumacher & Morahan-Martin, 2001), English secondary school students (Madell & Muncer, 2004), Israeli school students (Nachmias, Mioduster, & Shelma, 2000), North Cyprus adolescents (Bayraktar & Gun, 2007), Greek adolescent students (Siomos, Dafouli, 5 Braimiotis, Mouzas, & Angelopoulos, 2008), and Hong Kong adolescents (Ho, & Lee, 2001), as well as Korean adult users (Rhee & Kim, 2004). However, there is no gender difference in how long adolescents using the Internet, with most of the participants having been online for more than two years (Gross, 2004). Despite great concerns over isolation and depression, teens report an optimistic picture about the social use of the Internet (Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001).
For example, Bryant and colleagues (2006) found that online communication technologies encourage communication with existing friends and families. In addition, some researchers demonstrated that Internet use is positively related to time spent with existing friends and family members (Kraut, Kiesler, Boneva, Cummings, Helgeson, & Crawford, 2002), to the closeness of existing friendships (Valkenburg & Peter, 2007b), and to the well being of adolescents (Kraut et al. , 2002; Morgan & Cotton, 2003, Shaw, & Grant, 2002).
The Internet Life Report study reported that e-mail and the Internet have enhanced users’ relationships with their family and friends (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2000). Nie, Hillygus, and Erbring (2002) also provided primary evidence that Internet use does not negatively impact household time together. A UCLA study found that the Internet provided opportunities for social gathering and engagement (UCLA Center for Communication Policy, 2003). Between Internet non-users and Internet users, the amount of weekly time spent sleeping, 6 exercising, participating in clubs/organizations, socializing with friends, and socializing with household members were similar (UCLA Center for Communication Policy, 2003). Authors of the PEW study argue that Internet use may create a social community because Internet users reported more social resources and connections than non-users. Those who have been online for three years become even more interpersonally engaged and gain more social support than new users (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2000).
Impact of Internet on Adolescents and Family Relationships There has been continuing debates about the impact of the Internet on family relationships and human development. Some studies on Internet use have raised concerns that excessive use of the Internet might bring social isolation, loneliness, depression, and deterioration of psychological well-being (Brenner, 1997; Lee, Han, Yang, Daniels, Na, Kee, et al. , 2008; National Public Radio, 2000; Nie, 2001; Nie, Hillygus, & Erbring, 2002; Spada, Langston, Nikcevic, & Moneta, 2008; Van den Eijnden, Meerkerk, Vermulst, Spijkerman, & Engels, 2008).
Other studies indicated that the Internet leads to substantially greater communication and enhances human connectivity and sociability (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2000; UCLA Center for Communication Policy, 2003). The Internet can also provide opportunities for family collaboration and communication between parents and children (Kiesler, 17 Zdaniuk, Lundmark, & Kraut, 2000; Orleans & Laney, 2000) and increases their access to useful information regarding parenting, education, and family health (Hughes & Hans, 2001).
Moderate use of the Internet may also have pro-social effects on young people by helping them sustain friendships (Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2001). However, the inconsistent findings of some studies do not allow any firm conclusions to be drawn about the impact of Internet usage on family relationships. The effects of Internet use on youngsters can also be seen to vary as a function of the motivation and type of Internet usage (McKenna & Bargh, 2000). For example, the ocial use of Internet has been found to be related to depression, while non-social use of the Internet such as information seeking and entertainment, have not been found to be related to adolescent depression (Bessiere, Kiesler, Kraut, & Boneva, 2008). Therefore, researchers such as Gross (2004), disagree with the early research assumptions about the negative effects of adolescent Internet use, as Gross reports that most teenage Internet users are more likely to communicate with existing friends than with strangers.
Supportive relationships with friends can positively contribute to adolescents’ sense of well-being, self-esteem, connectedness, and ability to cope with stress (Eisenberg, Sallquist, French, Purwono, Suryanti, & Pidada, 2009; Hartup & Stevens, 1997). In a national survey, nearly 50% of teenagers reported that the Internet 18 has improved their relationships with their existing friends (Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001). Unfortunately, studies on the association between adolescents’ Internet use and family relationships are limited.
Only some positive association between poor family relationships and excessive/ problematic use of the Internet or Internet addiction has been supported by empirical findings. Youths who experience high levels of conflict with their parents are at risk for some negative outcomes in Internet use. For example, participants who reported poor emotional bonds with caregivers were more likely to view pornography online (Ybarra & Mitchell, 2005). Ybarra and Mitchell (2004a) also found that youths who exhibit offensive behaviors in Cyber space(s) are also more likely to report poor emotional bonds with their parents than other Internet users.
Adolescents who do not have open communication about their Internet use with their parents are more likely to be involved in risky Internet behaviors, such as having a face-to-face meeting with a stranger who they encountered online (Liau, Khoo, & Ang, 2005). Other research found that paternal alienation and adolescents’ insecurity and mistrust with their fathers contribute significantly to problematic Internet use among Chinese adolescents.
Adolescents’ security and trust in their relationships with their fathers is negatively related to the negative outcomes of Internet use (Lei & Wu, 2007). Lei and Wu (2007) argued that adolescents who experience a negative 19 relationship with their fathers are more likely to use the Internet excessively to seek emotional support. In the study of pathological Internet use in South Korea, high school students with pathological Internet use showed more problems in family relations than the non- pathological Internet use group (Cho, Kim, Kim, Lee, & Kim, 2008).
The negative effects of Internet use on family communication and closeness can be explained by the nature of virtual relationships and the displacement hypothesis, which argues that high frequency of Internet use might be related to the decrease of family time (Jackson, von Eye, Barbatis, Biocca, Zhao, & Fitzgerald, 2003; Nie, Simpser, Stepanikova, & Zheung, 2004). The displacement hypothesis argues that computer-mediated communication hinders adolescents’ well being because it displaces valuable time that could be spent with existing friends (Kraut et al. 1998; Nie, 2001; Nie, Hillygus, & Erbring, 2002). According to the displacement hypothesis, individuals have a limited amount time (Huston, Wright, Marquis, & Green, 1999; Larson & Verma, 1999). If individuals increase the time they spend on a particular activity, they may make sacrifices in other areas (Neuman, 1991). Therefore, time spent on online activities may cut other activities such as reading and social interaction, which are essential to normal development (Kraut et al. , 1998; Morgan & Cotton, 2003; Nie, 2001; Nie, Hillygus, & Erbring, 2002; Weiser, 2001). 0 Online relationships are characterized by some researchers as being of lesser depth, more superficial, and weaker than typically found in face to face relationships (Chan & Cheng, 2004; Kraut et al. , 1998; Nie, Hillygus, & Erbring, 2002). Scholars argue that there is a cyberspace that exists apart from everyday life, which is inferior to real space (Haythronthwaite & Wellman, 2002; Miller & Slater, 2000). Kraut et al. (1998) also described Internet social relationships as poor and weak and face-to-face relationships as strong.
Therefore, weak and superficial ties of virtual contact on the Interne may bring experience of loneliness and depression (Ybarra, Alexander, & Mitchell, 2005). In addition, online communications with strangers and acquaintances typically provide less social support than offline relationships with family and friends (Wellman, Salaff, Dimitrova, Garton, Gulia, & Haythornthwaite, 1996). For example, HomeNet study participants reported that they felt less close to those they communicated with online compared to those they communicated with face-to-face (Parks & Roberts, 1998).
Chan and Cheng (2004) found that computer-mediated communication and relationships are less beneficial than traditional off-line relationships, at least in the early stages. Among teens and adults in the HomeNet project, greater use of the Internet during the first year of access is associated with small but significant declines in social involvement as measured by communication within the family, size of social networks, and feelings of loneliness (Kraut et al. , 21 1996). It may be assumable that having greater online bonds with strangers than close family- and peer- ties may be problematic.
The Internet Life Report study (National Public Radio, 2000) found that 58% of Americans spend less time with friends and family due to Internet usage and half of Americans believe that computers have given people less free time. The Internet and Society study (Nie & Erbring, 2002) also found that as the number of hours of Internet use has increased, the time for social activities declined, such as spending time with friends and family, staying outside of their home for social gathering, and talking to friends and family members on the telephone.
Nie (2001) found a steady decrease in social interactions with family and friends as individuals engaged in longer Internet usage sessions. However, other studies have found no significant relationship between physical social interactions and the length of time individuals spend in Internet use (Gross, 2004; Kraut et al. , 2002; Jackson, et al. , 2003; Mesch, 2001, 2003; Sanders, Field, Diego, & Kaplan, 2000; Wastlund, Norlander, & Archer, 2001). Length of time may not be as important as the type of Internet use.
Research has demonstrated that the impact of Internet communication on adolescents’ social relationships is dependent on the way communication is used and the type of activities in which the individual engages (Lee & Chae, 2007; Subrahmanyam, Kraut, Greenfield, & Gross, 2000). Some researchers argue that people use the Internet to 22 strengthen their traditional face to face relationships (Kraut, et al. , 1998; McKenna & Bargh, 2000). For example, much of the time adolescents spend alone with computers is actually used to keep up existing friendships (Gross, 2004; Subrahmanyam, et al. 2000; Valkenburg & Peter, 2007a) and most online interactions are between people who also talk on the telephone or meet face-to-face (Miller & Slater, 2000; PEW Project on the Internet and American Life, 2000; UCLA Center for Communication Policy, 2003). Many parents are concerned about the potential harmful effects of Internet use (Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2000). Surveys of parental attitudes about teen Internet use indicate that parents are insecure about their teens’ Internet use.
The majority of parents (75%) are concerned about the disclosure of personal information and exposure to sexually explicit images (Clemente, Espinosa, & Vidal, 2008; Turow, 1999), and 57% of parents are concerned about online contact between their children and strangers (The PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2007a). A study conducted in Singapore, conducted by Liau, Khoo, and Ang (2005), found that 78% of parents indicated that their major concern was that their children would be exposed to pornographic and violent material while using the Internet.
In fact, 60% of adolescents indicated that they have received messages from strangers (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2001). 23 Parents, despite these concerns, are willing to purchase home computers and Internet subscriptions so that their children can have access to educational opportunities and are prepared for the information age (Buckingham, Scanlon, & Sefton-Green, 2001; Linvingston, 2003). However, they are disappointed when they find that their children’s primary online activities include gaming, downloading lyrics of popular songs and pictures of rock stars, etc. and the potential harmful effects of Internet use (Subrahmanyam, Kraut, Greenfield, & Gross, 2000). Consequently, there has been a decrease since 2004 in the number of parents who believe that the Internet is beneficial for their children (PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2007a). In part these intergenerational conflicts on Internet usage may be explained by differences between parental expectation of Internet usage and actual Internet use by adolescents (Kiesler, Zdaniuk, Lundmark, & Kraut, 2000; Lenhart, Raine, & Lewis, 2001; Turow, 2001).
The majority of parents expect their children to use the Internet for educational purposes (Lenhart, Raine, & Lewis, 2001), while teens prefer to use the Internet for socializing and entertainment (Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005). Therefore, when parental expectations and adolescents’ use of the Internet contradict, intergenerational conflicts can increase (Mesch, 2003). 24 Effects of the Internet Usage on Academic Achievement Over the last couple of decades, personal computers have spread rapidly into American homes, provoking thoughts that those who do not have access to home computers may become disadvantaged.
According to the National survey, over 70% of households having children aged three to seven possesses a home computer (U. S. Census Bureau, 2005). However, large disparities in computer ownership by race and family income remain. Many government and non-governmental organizations are trying to bridge this digital divide across nations and between households. The U. S. Congress has made it a national priority to provide all American children with access to computers at school. Congress enacted the Goals 2000, i. e. Educate America Act (PL 103-227) and the Improving America’s Schools Act (PL 103-382), and created several programs to help elementary and secondary schools acquire and use technology to improve the delivery of educational services (Coley, Cradler, & Engel, 1996). As a result of this endeavor, the percentage regarding access to computers and the Internet in American public elementary and secondary schools has increased from 35% in 1994 to 95% in 1999. Finally, all public schools have had Internet access since 2003 (National Center for Education Statistics, 2005).
Many scholars consider home computers a tool that reinforces or supplements school learning, and are concerned that a lack of access to a home computer may be 25 related to lower educational achievement. Most parents also believe that computers are an important educational resource that allows their children to discover fascinating and useful things, and that children without access are disadvantaged compared to those with access (Clemente, Espinosa, & Vidal, 2008; Turow, 1999). As a result, a growing number of parents are providing their children with access to computers at home.
Among households with children-aged two to seventeen, home computer ownership jumped from 48% in 1996 to 70% in 2000, while connections to the Internet catapulted from 15% to 52% over the same 5-year period in the U. S. (Woodward & Gridina, 2000). Given the increased prevalence of access to computers and the Internet in homes and schools, the potential value of a personal computer in child development has been debated consistently among parents, educators, and researchers for decades.
Students’ computer use can be conceptualized in two ways: (a) home computer use for socializing, entertainment, and educational purpose, and (b) school computer use primarily with computer-based instruction and as a learning assistance tool. Despite positive expectations about computer technology, a positive relationship between the use of computer technology and academic outcomes has only partially been supported through inconsistent research findings (Angrist & Lavy, 2002; Blanton, Moorman, Hayes, & Warner, 1997; Campuzano, Dynarski, Agodini, Rall, & Pendleton, 2009; 6 Dynarski, Agodini, Heaviside, Novak, Carey, Campuzano, et al. , 2007; Goolsbee & Guryan, 2006; Li, Atkins, & Stanton, 2006; Rouse & Krueger, 2004). Some studies have revealed positive correlations (Attewell & Battle, 1999; Attewell, Suazo-Garcia, & Battle, 2003; Borzekowski & Robinson, 2005; Judge, 2005; Beltran, Das, & Fairlie, 2006; Jackson et al. 2006), such as between computer use and children’s fine motor skills (Christensen, 2004; Ziajka, 1983), word/letter recognition (Cuffaro, 1984; Mioduser, Tur-Kaspa, & Leitner, 2000), concept learning (Howard-Jones, & Martin, 2002; Sung, Chang, & Lee, 2008), number recognition (Cuffaro, 1984), counting skills and pre-mathematical knowledge (Clements, 2002; Hess, & McGarvey, 1987), reading readiness (Hess, & McGarvey, 1987), cognitive development (Howell, Scott, &Diamond, 1987; Sung, Chang, & Lee, 2008; Shute & Miksad, 1997), visual spatial skills (Subrahmanyam, et al. 2000) and self-esteem (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007; Haugland, 1992; Vogelwiesche, Grob, & Winkler, 2006). However, other studies have found no significant evidence of computer technology use and positive school outcomes (Malamud & Pop-Eleches. 2008; Shapley, Sheehan, Maloney, & Caranikas-Walker, 2008). A recent study based on a survey given to one million children by Vigdor and colleagues (Clotfelter, Ladd, & Vigdor, 2008) has revealed that high speed internet availability is associated with less educational use of omputers and lower math and reading test scores. 27 Children and teens frequently use home computers and the Internet for their homework and run educational programs (Kraut, et al. , 1996; National Center for Education Statistics, 2003; PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2001; UCLS Center for Communication Policy, 2003). Home computer use has been linked to improvements in literacy (Attewell & Battle, 1999; Weinberger, 1996; PEW Internet and American Life Project, 2007c), language (N? dal, 2007), mathematics (Attewell & Battle, 1999) and general academic performance (Attewell, 2001; Rocheleau, 1995). Early computer exposure among young children before school years is also associated with the development of preschool concepts and cognition (Li & Atkins, 2004). It was found that children who had access to a computer had shown better performance in school readiness and cognitive tests. These positive effects are not, however, always the result of computer and Internet use.
Internet use can be a source of non-productive activities according to the displacement hypothesis. Students with home computers are more likely to live in families with higher incomes and education, which are highly correlated with better academic performance (Li & Atkins, 2004). It has been found that children from a higher socio-economic status obtain more benefits from home computers than children from lower socio-economic statuses (Giacquinta, Bauer, & Levin, 1993). On the contrary, having a home computer among low-income Romanian families has 8 negative consequences on children’s school performance and behaviors, because children in households that own a home computer spend large amounts of time in front of the computer and show negative behavioral outcomes (Malamud & PopEleches, 2008). Other research shows similar results. Giacquinta and colleagues (1993) examined home computing among seventy middle class families for three year, that children use home computers almost exclusively for playing games and that academic use of computers is almost absent.
This might be explained in terms of the contribution of parental support; findings from the Romanian study suggest that parental monitoring and supervision are important mediating factors (Malamud & Pop-Eleches, 2008). Giacquinta et al. , (1993) interpreted that children’s lack of educational use of the Internet is highly dependent on parental support and guidance. In other words, greater educational usage of computers by children might be the result of parental involvement, such as through the purchase of educational software, monitoring of computer use, and managing of the children’s computer time.
Therefore, one may speculate that more affluent and more highly educated parents are better able to provide supportive learning environments and are more likely to have high expectation of their children’s educational achievement (Attewell & Battle, 1999). 29 Parent-Child Relationship and Adolescent Outcomes The parent-child relationship is vital to the development and adjustment of the child. The younger the child the more they are dependent upon their parents; the relationship with parents is very important to the children’s survival.
Although there is some doubt, a large body of evidence indicates that parents still play an important role in the development and adjustment of their adolescent children (Hair, Moore, Garrett, Ling, & Cleveland, 2008; Steinberg, 2008). For example, good quality relationships with parents have been found to predict lower levels of adolescent delinquent behavior (Hair, et al. , 2008) and adolescent depression (Aseltine, Gore, & Colten, 1998).
Also, positive relationships between parents and children show buffering effects of marital conflict or family disruption on antisocial behaviors of children (Conger, Ge, Elder, Lorenz, & Simons, 1994) and can protect adolescents from the negative effects of abusive parenting styles (Moore, Guzman, Hair, Lippman, & Garrett, 2004). An association between the quality of intergenerational relationships and adolescents’ educational and life outcomes has been well established using various methodologies (Barber, 1996; Burt, McGue, Krueger, & Iacono, 2005; Kerr & Stattin, 2000; Petti, Laird, Dodge, Bates, & Criss, 2001).
For example, longitudinal research findings indicate that there are significant association between the quality of parent adolescent and adolescents’ externalizing problems (Fanti, Henrich, Brookmeyer, & 30 Kuperminc, 2008); and a reciprocal relationship was also reported to exist between the quality of the parent-adolescent relationship and adolescents’ internalizing problems (Buist, Dekovic, Meeus, & Van Aken, 2004; Fanti, et al. , 2008; Sameroff & MacKenzie, 2003).
Cross-sectional research also indicates that a close link exists between the quality of adolescents’ relationships with their parents and adolescents’ emotional and behavioral problems (Garber, Robinson, & Valentiner, 1997). Furthermore, some studies found that parent-adolescent closeness is positively related to adolescents’ academic achievement. Intergenerational closeness may lead to shared expectations of adolescents’ psychological, behavioral, social expectations and values, as well as a shared responsibility for practicing and correcting undesirable behaviors (Amato & Gilbreth, 1999; Englund, Egeland, & Collins, 2008).
These multidimensional social ties may become an important pathway for information and resources that could directly enhance adolescents’ academic progress (Rosenbaum & Rochford, 2008). Other researchers (Brewster & Bowen, 2004; Catterall, 1998; Jimersn, Egeland, Sroufe, & Carlson, 2000) have indicated that parental instrumental and emotional support, hostility and rejection, and intergenerational communications are prominent determinants of educational success or failure.
In other words, the quality of parent-adolescent relationships is an important predictor of adolescents’ psychosocial adjustment (Amato & Rivera, 1999), school adaptation, coping strategies, 31 socio-emotional competence, and social interaction among peers (Lieberman, Doyle, & Markiewicz, 1999). Family cohesion also was found to be the core predictor of children’s academic success (Forkel & Silbereisen, 2001; Rosenbaum & Rochford, 2008; Windle, 1992).
It has also been found that adolescents’ perception of the cohesiveness of intergenerational relationships is significantly related to young adolescents’ well being (Sun & Hui, 2007; Wentzel & Feldman, 1993). Therefore, how the adolescent assesses and interprets the nature of their parent adolescent relationship may have a strong direct and indirect impact on their own behavior and adaptation (Feldman, Wentzel, & Gehring, 1989). For example, Hindin (2005) found that adolescent boys attained more education if they reported being close to their mothers.
Another study reveals an important relationship between family cohesion and children’s internalizing and attention problems (Lucia & Breslau, 2006). Conversely, the lack of parental support was significantly contributing to adolescents’ depression, anxiety, low selfesteem, hopelessness and subsequent suicidal ideation (Simon & Murphy, 1985). Adolescents’ depressive symptoms and suicidal ideations are commonly predicted by the lack of closeness to parents and negative life events (Kandel, Raveis, & Davies, 1991). 2 In addition, a significant relationship between family conflict and lower psychological distress was found among Latino groups (Rivera, Guarnaccia, Mulvaney-Day, Lin, Torres, & Alegria, 2008). Meneese and colleagues (1992) found that when girls experience more family conflict, they develop a sense of hopelessness and when boys perceived a low level of family cohesion, they develop poor coping strategies, a sense of hopelessness and depression.
In conclusion, intergenerational conflict is one of the most significant predictors of adolescents’ psychological maladjustment (Lee, Wong, Chow, & McBride-Chang, 2006), along with intergenerational closeness/ cohesion. Adolescence is a period during which autonomy and independence develop, and parent-child conflict increases (Paikoff & Brooks-Gunn, 1991). The onset of puberty is often associated with increased conflict, decreased cohesiveness, and emotional distance from parents (Steinberg, 1987).
Parent-child conflict is defined as a state of resistance or opposition between parents and children (Shantz & Hartup, 1992) characterized by frequent disagreements, fights, arguments, and anger. The level of conflict varies depending on prior family relationships, family structure, and individual parent and child characteristics (Montemayor, 1986; Small, Eastern, & Cornelius, 1988). The consequences of parent-and-adolescent conflict are seen as a 33 normal aspect of development or a healthy facilitator of psychological growth (Shantz & Hartup, 1992).
Parent-adolescent conflict is also considered a risk factor for developing emotional and behavioral problems (Marmorstein & Iacono, 2004), well-being (Dekovic, 1999), and troubles in parent-adolescent relationships (Shantz & Hartup, 1992). For example, parent-adolescent conflict has been found by multiple researchers to be related to adolescents’ internal and external behaviors (Adams, Gullotta, & Clancy, 1985; Bradford, Vaughn, & Barber, 2008; Patterson, 1982; Stevens, Vollebergh, Pels, & Crijnen, 2005a, b), depression (Dumka, Roosa, & Jackson, 1997; Marmorstein & Iacono, 2004), and adolescents’ well being (Dekovic, 1999).
Adams and colleagues (1985) also found that intergenerational conflict is positively related to adolescent delinquency and running away from home. Parent-child conflict is also related to a child’s school achievement as well. For example, parent-child conflict along with depression and discrimination influence adolescents’ self-esteem and school achievement among Spanish-speaking adolescents (Portes & Zady, 2002). Adams and Laursen (2007) also found negative relations between intergenerational conflict and school grades, and positive relationships between delinquency and withdrawal for adolescents and their parents. 4 Parenting styles are also one aspect of intergenerational relationships and have received notable attention. Parenting styles typically include parental control and warmth (Radziszewska, Richardson, Dent, & Flay, 1996). Therefore, parenting style as an aspect of parent-child relationships has been identified as the key factor for understanding adolescent cognitive, academic, and behavioral development (Hindin, 2005). Baumrind (1991) developed four types of parenting styles: authoritarian, authoritative, permissive, and rejecting-neglectful.
In particular, an authoritative parenting style has been found to be beneficial to adolescents for psychosocial adjustment and well-being (Steinberg, 2008). For example, an authoritative parenting style is predictive of academic achievement among white adolescents (Dornbusch, Ritter, Leiderman, Roberts, & Fraleigh, 1987). Rimm and Lowe (1988) found that parents of high-achieving gifted students are more consistently using an authoritative approach than parents of low-achieving gifted students.
Many studies show that adolescents from authoritative homes show good school achievement, less depressive and anxious symptoms, high self-esteem and self-reliance, and less antisocial behaviors such as drug use and delinquency (Lamborn, Mounts, Steinburg, & Dornbusch, 1991; Steinburg, Lamborn, Darling, Mounts, & Dornbusch, 1994; Steinburg, Lamborn, Dornbusch, & Darling, 1992). 35 These parenting styles create an emotional climate in which the parent’s behaviors are expressed (Darling & Steinberg, 1993) and produce unique parenting practices, which produces the specific developmental outcomes of interest.
For example, parenting practices include supervision of homework, involvement of school activities, monitoring of children’s use of media, and so on. Therefore, these same parenting practices may have different outcomes when implemented with one parenting style than with another (Steinberg & Silk, 2002). Parenting practices also include parental awareness or monitoring, supportiveness, strictness, family routines (Paschall, Ringwalt, & Flewelling, 2003; Smetana, Crean, & Daddis, 2002), and parent involvement (Hair, Moore, Garrett, Ling, & Cleveland, 2008).
Research indicates that parents who do not practice proper parental discipline and supervision are more likely to have hostile coercive relationships with their children (Hetherington, 1993). For example, when parental hostility toward their children increases, parental monitoring often decreases (Kim, Hetherington, & Reiss, 1999). When parents engage in decreased parental monitoring they are also less aware of their children’s well-being (Smetana, Crean, & Daddis, 2002).
In addition, it was found that unsupportive parenting is also related to internalizing problems from childhood to early adolescence (Eisenberg, Fabes, Shepard, Guthrie, Murphy, & Reiser, 1999). Coercive parenting and the lack of parental monitoring has been found 36 to contribute not only to boys’ antisocial behaviors, but also to their delinquent acts (Simons, Johnson, Beaman, Conger, & Whitbeck, 1996). Conversely, parental awareness predicts positive psychological adjustment of preadolescents (Brody, Murry, Kim, & Brown, 2002) and a decrease in adolescents’ behavioral problems (Smetana, Crean, & Daddis, 2002).
Furthermore, Patterson and colleagues (1984) showed that inept parental discipline is related to negative exchanges between siblings, which in turn correlated with boys’ physical aggression and other externalizing behaviors. Parental Expectations and Adolescents’ Academic Achievement The academic success of Korean and East-Asian students has been well documented (Coleman, Hoffer, & Kilgore, 1982; Matute-Bianchi, 1986; Schneider, Hieshima, Lee, & Plank, 1994; Schneider & Lee, 1990).
For example, Korean students were top achievers in math, science, and literacy in the thirty-one-nation study of grade nine students (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, 2003) and the international studies of academic achievement of middleschool students (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2000). On standardized tests, East-Asian students typically outperform Western students (Schneider, Hieshima, Lee, & Plank, 1994). 7 The Chicago field study conducted by Northwestern University to understand the contributing factors to the high academic achievement among Asian populations (Schneider & Lee, 1990) revealed that the academic success of East-Asian students is linked to a) the shared values and aspirations about academic success among parents and students, b) the home learning environment and parental active involvement, and c) the shared expectations among family members and the interactions with teachers and classmates.
It has already been suggested that parents make a strong contribution to their child’s school performance through the relationships they nurture with their child (Astone & McLanahan, 1991). Among parental contributions, parental expectations and belief systems have been considered one of the strongest predictors of children’s academic achievement (Wentzel, 1994). The comparison study by Schwarz and colleagues (2005) of German and Korean families also reported high levels of parental educational expectations among Korean parents, which were positively related to the degree of parental support and warmth.
The positive relationship between parental expectations or aspirations and their children’s educational achievement has been consistently supported through empirical studies (Furstenberg, & Hughes, 1995; Zhan, 2006; Sandefur, Meier, & Campbell, 2006) and among diverse populations (Neuenschwander, Vida, Garrett, & Eccles, 2007; Seyfried, & Chung, 2002). For example, Smith and colleagues (1995) found 38 that parental expectation of their children’s college attendance is a significant positive predictor of actual subsequent college attendance of their children regardless of the place of residence.
A longitudinal study revealed that parental expectations and children’s academic achievement are highly related through parental involvement (Englund, Luckner, Whaley, & Egeland, 2004). Some researchers have also found that parental expectations for their children’s educational attainment have a stronger relation to children’s academic achievement than other parental factors, such as parent-child communication and parental school involvement (Fan, 2001; Fan & Chen, 2001; Singh, Bickley, Trivette, Keith, Keith, & Anderson, 1995).
Furthermore, direct positive relationships between parental expectations and children’s achievement were found after controlling for earlier achievement among 3rd and 4th graders (Halle, Kurtz-Coster, & Mahoney, 1997). Another study showed that parents’ and teachers’ expectations exert a significant influence on youth’s academic competency and performance, while low adult expectations have a disruptive effect.
More interestingly, high mother expectations have buffering effects in the face of low teacher expectations (Benner & Mistry, 2007). Indirect effects of parental expectations on children’s academic achievement may also be mediated through parental involvement (Croswell, O’Connor, & Brewin, 2008; Englund, Luckner, Whaley, et al. , 2004; Seyfried, & Chung, 2002) and parenting practices (Hill, 2001). 39 The direct relationship between parental expectations and children’s academic achievement has not been consistently found.
For instance, Goldenberg and colleagues (2001) found that children’s achievement predicted parental expectations, but that parental expectations have no significant effects on children’s achievement in a longitudinal study of kindergarten through sixth-grade children. Discrepancies in developmental and behavioral expectations between parents and adolescents have been found to be associated with the amount of intergenerational conflicts (Dekovic, Noom, & Meeus, 1997).
Also, a qualitative study described the potential harmful effect of excessive parental expectations among Chinese immigrant families, which might put tremendous pressure on children and also might blind parents to the social and emotional needs of their children (Qin, 2008). Historically, Koreans hold a very strong aspiration of education (Chung, 1991a). After the Korean War, Koreans were expected to rebuild their country and those who had educational qualifications were the ones that were called on first.
Therefore, Koreans believe in the strong power of educational background; 98% of mothers and 77% of fathers of high school seniors reported their hopes were for their children to enter a college (Kim, Kim, Park, You, Yoon, et al. , 1994). Korean parents have undertaken enormous sacrifices for their children in order to help them achieve academic success (Kim, Park, & Koo, 2004), and Korean parents press their children 40 to acquire a college diploma (Bong, 2008).
Consequently, school curriculum and schedules are run in preparation for children’s future college entrance. For example, it is normal for high school students to arrive home from school at midnight, after intensive “self-study” sessions supported by the school. When students finish their classes, some of them go to private institutions to boost their academic performance and others stay in school to prepare for the collage entrance exam, and then finally come back home late at night. According to the 2003 survey, 83. % of elementary students, 75. 3% of middle school students, and 77. 6% of high school students are receiving private lessons (Choi, 2004). Although middle school education is mandatory in Korean educational system, 97% of young adults complete high school education, which is the highest percentage among OECD (Organization for Economic Corporation and Development) countries (BBC NEWS, 2005, September 13). Korean adolescents’ allocation of time devoted to schoolwork increases as students approach their high school senior year.
Some studies showed that Korean 12th graders report spending as much as 14 to 18 hours a day studying, giving up sleep and leisure activities to devote every possible minute to college exam preparation (Chung, 1991b; Chung, Kim, Lee, Kwon, & Lee, 1993). A common slogan among Korean 12th graders is “Pass with four, fail with five,” which refers to the hours of sleep thought allowable to maximize exam preparation. Actually, 41 about 80% of high school graduates went to colleges or universities in 2004.
The rate of entrance into secondary educational institutions has continuously increased since 1970, which was 38. 6% in 1993 and 79. 7% in 2003 (Korean Statistical Information Service, 2004). Because of the importance of the university entrance examination in determining one’s career prospects, Korean adolescents devote large amounts of time to studying (Bong, 2008, 2003; Chung, 1991a; Park & Kim, 2006; Schwarz, Schafermeier, & Trommsdorff, 2005). Students are under intense pressure to study long hours, and the emotional stress to do well on the standardized test is very great (Chung, 1991b).
Many students get burned out because during the high school years, students have little chance to do much except study. It is not uncommon for a handful of students in each classroom to fall asleep from exhaustion. Students are encouraged to see themselves as being in fierce competition with their friends and peers (Bong, 2008, 2003). As a national survey showed, their greatest concerns are academic matters (48. 9%), health and appearance (18. 4%), and family issues (6. 8%; National Internet Development Agency of Korea, 2007).
Asian children incorporate their high parental aspirations and feel obligated to satisfy their parents (Bong, 2008). Children’s success and failure is often met with parents’ approval and disapproval (Kim & Park, 1999; Markus & Kitayama, 1991; 42 Park, Kim, & Chung, 2004). Their need to preserve strong emotional bonds with their mothers is related to children’s willingness to accept their mothers’ values on educational success as their own (Iyengar & Lepper, 1999). In Korea, maintaining good relationships with parents is as important as success in school and academic achievement (Kim, Park, & Koo, 2004).
Heavy emphasis on the academic achievement of students and their parents make school and classroom highly competitive (Bong, 2003). As a result, grades and test scores tend to be overemphasized (Bong, 2004). School culture emphasizing academic achievement only, strong parental pressure on academic success, and a sense of indebtedness toward parents may play a unique role in the parent-adolescent relationships and adolescents’ well being in Korea. South Korean adolescents tend to define and sustain themselves with respect to significant relationships within the family.
Because of cultural norms and expectations, parents play a salient role in the development and adjustment of their adolescent children, particularly their children’s education (Kim, Kim, Park, et al. , 1994). This expectation places excessive pressure on their children to become high achievers (Fuligni, 1997; Mau, 1997). Korean adolescents in turn internalize their parents’ educational expectations (Kim, Kim, Park, et al. , 1994) and try hard not to disappoint their parents (Heine, 2001). Korean families’ congruency in academic achievement 3 may be understood by the importance and emphasis on the interdependent relationship between parent and child under the influence of Confucianism. Confucianism is a complex system of moral, social, political, philosophical, and quasi-religious thought that has had tremendous influence on the culture and history of East Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, and Vietnam. Confucianism is typically characterized as collectivistic and interdependent, and emphasizes the importance of relationships with in-group members (Markus & Kitayama, 1991).
Under the Confucian framework, individuals are connected to each other via relationships and with respect to the roles that are inherent in those relationships. These various relationships constitute clear roles and duties with a coherent hierarchy (Kitayama, Markus, & Kurokawa, 2000). The maintenance of one’s interpersonal harmony within five principle relationships (e. g. , parent-child, husband-wife, elder-younger, governor-minister, and friend-friend) is central to Confucianism.
Since Confucian culture heavily emphasizes respect to elders and seniors, intergenerational relationships are considered the most important one among these five relationships (Su, Chin, Hong, Leung, Peng, & Morris, 1999). As individuals’ relationships and roles are often determined within a given situation and the people surrounding them, according to Confucianism, Koreans are more likely to describe themselves with reference to social roles or memberships than are Americans (Markus & Kitayama, 1991). Within East Asian culture, the individual 4 must be responsive to the needs of others and the obligations associated with their social roles. They are encouraged to harmonize with others and to adjust themselves to the social environment (Morling, Kitayama, & Miyamoto, 2002). Individuals’ commitment to others and fulfillment of cultural obligations contributes to the group’s success. Therefore, individuals should be sensitive to cultural demands, so that they do not fail to live up to the group standards (Heine, 2001). For example, East Asian children are more willing to follow their mothers’ decisions than are Euro-American children (Iyengar & Lepper, 1999).
Additionally, Asian American children do not show negative reactions when their mothers’ make choices for them, unlike EuroAmerican children (Iyengar, Lepper, & Ross, 1999). Theoretical Frameworks and Proposed Conceptual Models Uses and Gratifications Theory Few theoretical frameworks have been used to help explain the impact of the Internet on users. The uses and gratifications framework, previously been applied to a wide range of mass media usage and interpersonal communication areas, has been used to explain expected positive outcomes associated with Internet use (LaRose, Mastro, & Eastin, 2001).
According to the uses and gratifications framework, audiences seek out media, such as the Internet, in an attempt to gratify a variety of needs (LaRose, Mastro, & Eastin, 2001). Some Internet uses, considered factors of 45 gratification including communication, information, and entertainment, have been identified as having strong explanatory power in individual Internet use (Charney & Greenberg, 2001; Eighmey & McCord, 1998; Flanagin & Metzger, 2001; Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000).
The theory is further supported in research investigating individuals’ online activities. Researchers report that Internet users have primarily accessed the Internet for communication, entertainment, and for seeking information (Gross, Juvonen, & Gable, 2001; Jackson, et al. , 2006; Korean Statistical Information Service, 2007; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001; Mesch, 2003, 2006; Policy Information Center of the Educational Testing service Network, 1999; Suler, 1998).
It is apparent that the Internet is used to fulfill individuals’ gratification needs, yet it is less clear which on-line activity individuals find most gratifying. Gratification may be based on cultural values, such as respect for one’s elders or expectation for educational excellence. Research to date has not consistently found one activity among these three (communication, entertainment, and for seeking information) as being the predominant motivator for Internet use in American or Korean society.
For instance, some researchers have reported that the primary reason for Internet use is for interpersonal communication among American adolescents (Gross, 2004; Lenhart, Madden, & Hitlin, 2005; Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000; Valkenburg & Peter, 2007b), whereas Korean adolescents have been reported to primarily use the Internet for 46 gaming (Korean Educational Development Institute, 2003) or for data/ information seeking behavior (Korean Statistical Information Service, 2007). The Korean Statistical Information Service reported in 2007 that data/ information seeking behavior is the primary use of the Internet, accounting for by 88. % of use, far exceeding all other uses. Observational Learning Theory The direct effect of the Internet on adolescents’ academic achievement can be framed using the observational learning theory; which contends that information is stored in memory through the process of attention and retention. Repeated covert and mental rehearsal of images strengthens stored information and memories, and then makes them more available for activation at a later time (Baundura, 1994). Program content may contribute to children’s cognitive scripts.
Repeated viewing leads children to retrieve, rehearse, solidify, and expand existing scripts, resulting in cumulative long-term effects (Huesman & Miller, 1994). Similarly, traditional communication research on television viewing and cognitive functioning, which focuses on the effects of viewing, can be used (Shin, 2004). This theory is divided into two hypotheses: the stimulation hypothesis and the reduction hypothesis. The stimulation hypothesis proposes that watching well-designed TV programs may enhance children’s academic achievement. 7 Informational Processing Theory The information processing model can also be applied to the effects of the Internet use, by explaining the process of cognitive development via the Internet through mental processes such as attention, perception, comprehension, memory, and problem solving (Johnson, 2006). Meta-cognitive processes such as planning, searching strategies and evaluation of information are exercised when using the Internet in congruence with the nature of the Internet as a multimodel interactive tool for both input and output (Johnson, 2006; Tarpley, 2001).
Internet use has been described in regard to its benefits including enhancing “visual processing of information, increase language and literacy skills, build knowledge base, and promote meta-cognitive abilities such as planning and evaluation” (Johnson, 2006, p. 3044). It seems that increased time spent engaged in Internet activities and resources may improve adolescents understanding of school concepts, increase cognitive ability, and boost memory ability (Li & Atkins, 2004), spatial skills (Subrahmanyam, et al. 2000), and enhance the quality of adolescents’ existing friendships (Bryant, Sanders-Jackson, & Smallwood, 2006; Gross, 2004; Subrahmanyam, et al. , 2000; Valkenburg & Peter, 2007b). The stimulation hypothesis would predict that Internet use; especially educational use, would result in academic achievement because adolescents can learn 48 a wide range of academic content, as the Internet provide repeated exposure to educational material. Increased Internet use has also been associated with many negative outcomes.
For example, researchers have found that increased time on the computer or Internet is associated with increased obesity (Adachi-Mejia, Longacre, Gibson, Beach, TitusErnstoff, & Dalton, 2007; Hill & Peter, 1998), the risk of repetitive strain injuries (Harris & Straker, 2000), seizures (Chuang, 2006: Trenite, van der Beld, Heynderickx, & Groen, 2004), and decreased general physical well-being (Mutti & Zadnik, 1996; Sheedy & Shaw-McMinn, 2002; Yan, Hu, Chen, & Lu, 2008).
Moreover, increased adolescent Internet use has been positively associated with antisocial behaviors (Mesch, 2001), sexual risk behaviors (Wolak, Finkelhor, & Mitchell, 2004; Ybarra & Mitchell, 2004b), and compromised psychological well-being (Caplan, 2002, 2003). Time Displacement Theory The time displacement hypothesis, which stems from the reduction hypotheses, assumes that adolescents have a limited amount of time (Mutz, Roberts, & van Vuuren, 1993). Therefore increased amounts of time in non-educational use of the Internet may hinder adolescents’ academic achievement.
When adolescents increase the time they spend online engaging in social and/or recreational activities, time sacrifices will have to be made in other areas, such as time spent on studying, reading, 49 and doing homework (Neuman, 1991). This displacement may happen because the Internet, which entertains adolescents with stimulating images as well as visual and auditory effects, is more attractive and immediately gratifying than are school-related activities.
Consequently, using the Internet will result in the displacement of academic activities, as television once did, and will eventually decrease the adolescent’s academic achievement (Aderson, Huston, Schmitt, Linebarger, Wright, & Larson, 2001; Koshal, Koshal, & Gupta, 1996; Shejwal, & Purayidathil, 2006; Shin, 2004; Valkenburg & van der Voort, 1994). Researchers have further reported that problematic Internet use among adolescents brings negative outcomes in school performance, as well as to social skills (Caplan, 2005).
Therefore, it is anticipated that Korean adolescent educational use of the Internet will be positively associated with academic achievement, and their noneducational use of the Internet, especially their recreational use, will be negatively associated with adolescents’ academic achievement. Human Ecology Theory Human ecology theory assumes that human development takes place within the context of relationships (White, 1991), and manifests in role performance and specialization in a family.
This study defines the family as an interdependently connected social system. Just as technological innovations change societies 50 (Bronfenbrenner, 1990; Watt & White, 1999), computers and the Internet bring about changes within the context of the family, resulting in changes to the nature of the relationships within each of the family’s subsystems. For example, when adolescent internet use increases, so do may conflicts between parents and adolescents over the child’s Internet usage.
Such conflict is likely to involve parental attempts to assert their authority over their child as their adolescent attempts to assert their autonomy over their use of time (Fuligni, 1998). Conflict within families is normative, particularly between parents and children during adolescence. Adolescence marks a developmental period in which families need to adjust and adapt their relationships to accommodate adolescents’ emerging autonomy and attachment-related issues (Steinberg, 1998). Many negotiations are likely to occur and result in concessions to the degree of parental regulation of adolescents’ everyday lives.
Some families perceive this transitional process of negotiation and disengagement as an opportunity for their adolescent children to foster emotional autonomy, facilitate individuation, and improve social reasoning (Steinberg, 1998). However, others experience this process as overly stressful, as they experience difficulties in communication that generates tension and conflict and also amplifies emotional turmoil within the family (Buchanan, Eccles, & Becker, 1992). 51 Parents may try multiple ways to monitor and control their child’s use of the computer.
For example, some parents restrict the time of Internet-related activities so that Internet usage does not interfere with schoolwork and socializing (Livingstone & Bovill, 2001). When parents’ increased restrictions coupled with adolescents’ growing need for autonomy can create conflicts within, as adolescents demand more independence and autonomy in use of their personal time and show more open disagreement with their parents conflicts become larger (Fuligni, 1998; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001).
The sharp increase of conflict and negative emotions in the parent-adolescent relationship may lead to decreased positive interactions and emotions about one another during the adolescent years (Kim, Conger, Lorenz, & Elder, 2001; Larson, Richards, Moneta, Holmbeck, & Duckett, 1996). One reason for intergenerational conflict may be based on parental concern over the activities the adolescent is engage in on-line (Mesch, 2006). Actually, much of the public debate over youth Internet use has been dominated by concerns about the dark side of online culture (Mitchell, Finkelhor, & Wolak, 2003).
Fears about children’s exposure to pornography and violence even prompted Congress to pass several laws to regulate cyberspace (Voedisch, 2000). In addition to concerns about children’s exposure online, parents, while viewing the Internet as an inevitable yet necessary evil in this information age, also have concerns about the potential harm the internet can have on 52 children; specifically in regards to children’s privacy and the reliability of accessed information (UCLS Center for Communication Policy, 2003).
In spite of the Internet pitfalls, most parents in the HomeNet Too project in U. S. have reported positive attitudes about their children’s Internet use (Jackson, et al. , 2003). Parental participants agreed that using the Internet helps children do better in school, and Internet skills will be necessary for their children to acquire a good job. Based on potential positive parental attitudes about the Internet, it is assumed that adolescents’ Internet use is associated with parent-adolescent closeness and parentadolescent conflicts.
However, due to the uniqueness of Korean culture, parents may be actively involved in the on-line lives of their adolescents as they guide their children toward academic success. It is widely known that Korean parents have high aspirations for higher education and high expectations for their children’s academic achievement (Bong, 2008, 2003; Cho & Yoon, 2005; Chung, 1991a; Park & Kim, 2006; Schwarz, Schafermeier, & Trommsdorff, 2005; Shin, 2007). Parental expectation reflects parental interest, concern, involvement, and support in the lives of their children (Sandefur, Meier, & Campbell, 2006).
Parental expectations can be expressed in many different ways; such as the investment made by many Korean parents who invest heavily in school education and private tutoring. In 1997 alone, it was estimated that 53 Korean parents spent more than 8. 06 billion dollars on private tutoring for their children (Kim, 2001). Korean parents have also been reported to exert excessive amounts of pressure on their adolescents to excel academically, unfortunately to the neglect of the child’s psychological needs (Cho, & Yoon, 2005; Kim, & Park, 1999).
Parental expectations and excessive pressure may further be related to intergenerational conflicts. Researchers have found that differences in the developmental expectations of parents and their children are associated with the amount of conflict within their relationship (Dekovic, Noom, & Meeus, 1997; Barber, 1994). Conversely, other researchers have found high parental expectation to be beneficial, as parents, who had high expectations, are also found to be more supportive of their children providing warmth and understanding (Kim & Park, 2006).
Moreover, mothers who value higher education for their daughters are likely to have daughters with egalitarian attitudes, nontraditional gender-typed cognitions, and greater autonomy (Kilbourne, Farkas, Beron, Weird, & England, 1994), which may contribute to greater intergenerational emotional closeness (Schwarz, Schafermeier, & Trommsdorff, 2005). Incongruence between parental and adolescent educational expectations would be considered non-normative, as most Korean adolescents also express a strong desire to enter college (Kim, Kim, Park et al. 1994; Kim & Park, 2006). Congruency has also been found to relate to low levels of conflict in empirical 54 research; when parents and adolescents show similar views on achievement, they experience low levels of conflict in their relationships (Dekovic, Noom, & Meeus, 1997). Furthermore, high congruency between Korean parents and their children on educational aspiration may be related to parental support and intergenerational closeness, under the Confucianism culture, which stresses the importance of intergenerational relationships.
Association between intergenerational relationships and adolescent adjustment may be explained by attachment theory. The attachment theory by Bowlby (1982) provides insight into the development process of intergenerational relationships. He refers to the bond between mother and child as an attachment. The development of a secure attachment has lasting consequences on intergenerational relationships (Bell & Ainsworth, 1972). The child develops a sense of trust in the parent and has a desire for independence based on a feeling of security in the relationship with the parents.
The concept of trust is provided from the work of Erik Erickson (Bigner, 2009). He developed this theory on the premise that young children must resolve a series of psychological tasks, and trust is the first and fundamental task. Through resolution of each stage, a child gains important social skills that facilitate social interaction. A failure to resolve one of these stages impedes a child’s psychosocial development and 55 adjustment (Bigner, 2009). Bowlby (1982) suggested that the relationship between parent and children has a significant effect upon the child’s psychosocial development.
Attachment theory states that the bond between the mother-child relationships contributes to development in the emotional system of the child. Based on a secure attachment, the child successfully obtains more complex aspects of affect, empathy, and social skills. Erickson described these aspects as ideas of trust, autonomy, initiative, industry, and identity (Bigner, 2009). All of these aspects are gained through secure attachment between mother and child. The quality of the attachment formed during early childhood affects social relationships in later life (Bowlby, 1982).
These theoretical assertions indicate that positive intergenerational relationships foster affective development, which leads to more effective performance in relationships with others and later facilitates educational performance (Maier, 1978). Previous research evidence suggests that close parent-child relationships are related to positive outcomes in psychosocial adaptation of children, adolescents, and young adults (Lucia & Breslau, 2006; Merz, Schuengel, & Schulze, 2008; Richmond & Stocker, 2006; Rivera, Guarnaccia, Mulvaney-Day, Lin, Torres, & Alegria, 2008).
For example, McHale & Rasmussen, (1998) report that harmonious family functioning during infancy predicts lower levels of preschooler aggression. A family’s 56 emotional bonding predicts frequency of delinquent acts for adolescents in nontraditional families (Matherne & Thomas, 2001). Family cohesion is identified as a protective factor against external stressors (Hovey & King, 1996) and positive parent-child relationships play a protective role for children living in homes high in conflict (Marcus & Betzer, 1996).
In addition, parental warmth, support, and parentchild connectedness has been associated with reduced adolescent pregnancy risk with an increase in sexual abstinence, postponing intercourse, having fewer sexual partners, and/or using contraception more consistently than adolescents without warm and supportive relationships (Miller, Benson, & Galbraith, 2001). Preschool children who had good relationships with their parental figures are less likely to engage in disruptive classroom behavior (Campbell, 1994; Campbell, March, Pierce, Ewing & Szumowski, 1991).
Therefore, it is anticipated that positive parent-adolescent closeness will be associated with adolescents’ positive academic and behavioral outcomes. A conceptual model tested in this study is presented below. Based on the attachment theory and the time-displacement hypothesis, it is assumed that family relationships (parent-adolescent conflict and closeness) are a major component contributing to the associations between adolescent Internet use and adolescents’ outcomes. The implication of this argument lies in the expectation that a 7 direct/indirect effect of adolescent Internet use on academic achievement and problematic behaviors exists, mediated by parent-adolescent relationships between these two variables. In addition, the role of parental expectations on the parent adolescent relationships between type of Internet activity and intergenerational relationships is expected. Gender Parental Expectation Parent-Adolescent Relationships Adolescents’ Internet Use Conceptualization Use of the Internet Adolescent Outcomes
The Internet is a vast computer network that connects computer networks and organizational computer facilities around the world (Random House Dictionary, 2005). For the purpose of this study, the Internet will be defined as the interconnected system of networks that connects computers and Internets around the world via the Internet Protocol. Access to and use of the Internet will be defined as occurring on a laptop or desktop computer. Thus, other devices, such as cell phones, will be excluded from this 8 definition. The use of the Internet in this study will be considered a multi-dimensional variable that includes the type of Internet activities engaged in and the amount of Internet use. Numerous surveys have attempted to measure the amount of general Internet use – including the length of time people spend online per unit of time. Estimates vary widely, depending on how Internet usage is measured (e. g. , self-report, automatically recorded), the ages of respondents sampled, when data was collected (i. e. year of the study), and how Internet use is defined (e. g. , length of time online, frequency of use; Jackson et al. , 2006). There is a need to empirically distinguish the amount of time spent on-line in various types activities (Lee & Kuo, 2002), even though most studies do not categorize or weigh Internet use according to the various activities and content (Joinson, 2001), it should be considered important since people use the Internet for a variety of purposes, which may vary by characteristics such as age, culture and gender.
The 2007 National Survey about Internet use by the Korean Statistical Information Service revealed that the three primary purposes for Internet use were data/information seeking (88. 7%); leisure activities, such as movies, games, and music (86. 0%), and communication through chatting and emailing (84. 7%). However, Korean teens’ Internet uses were found to deviate from these statistics in the Korean Educational Development Institute study in 2003 on the life of Korean teens.
The 59 three main types of Internet use were categorized as a) recreational activities such as gaming, searching information about music, movie, and entertainment; b) educational use, such as information seeking for school project and homework, downloading data, and programming; and c) communicative activities, such as chatting, e-mailing, involvement in online communities, and social networking websites, which is similar to that of the general population.
Moreover, these categorizations have been consistently found in American populations (DeBell & Chapman, 2006; Gross, Juvonen, & Gable, 2001; Jackson, 2006; Lenhart, Rainie, & Lewis, 2001; Policy Information Center of the Educational Testing service Network, 1999; Suler, 1998) and other countries (Mesch, 2003, 2006). Therefore, for the purpose of this study, type of Internet use will also be examined using these three categories: educational use, social use, and recreational use.
The frequency of Internet use and it’s functional use experienced by children and young people has been measured in a number of studies (Bayraktar, & Gun, 2007; Hunley, Evans, Delgado-Hachey, Krise, Rich & Schell, 2005; Malamud, & PopEleches, 2008; Mesch, 2006; Rhee, & Kim, 2004; Wainer, Dwyer, Dutra, Covic, Magalhaes, Ferreira et al. , 2001; Willoughby, 2008). In this study a second dimension of Internet use, time, will also be examined, including the amount of time spent online per week and the longevity of Internet use.
Time spent on-line per week will 60 include the number of hours the adolescents put on using the Internet per week, and longevity of Internet use will assess how long the adolescent has used the Internet over their lifespan. Educational Use of the Internet Educational use of the Internet will be defined in this study as using the Internet and computer technologies for obtaining information for academic purposes from a vast multimedia online library covering numerous topics.
Adolescents use the Internet to search for information for school research projects and other school assignments, and to enhance their learning and understanding. In addition, communication with people regarding schoolwork will be included. Social use of the Internet Social use of the Internet will be defined as using the Internet and computer technologies for social communication and interaction with people such as e-mailing, using Internet phone, text messaging, joining chat rooms, instant messaging, visiting blogs, and exchanging e-cards primarily with friends, family members, teachers, and so on.
Text messaging using cell phone is excluded in this study. Recreational Use of the Internet Recreational use of the Internet will be defined as using the Internet for recreational and entertaining purpose such as online gaming, downloading pictures, 61 listening to music, searching for information pertaining to leisure activities, and reading online news reports. Parent-Adolescent Conflict Conflict has previously been conceptualized as “the amount of openly expressed anger and conflict among family members (Moos & Moos, 1994, p. ) or “disagreement” (Adams & Laursen, 2007). In the large body of literature, parent-child conflict is assessed by the amount and the intensity of conflicts, such as an open expression of disagreement (Adams & Laursen, 2007; Dekovic, 1999) and argument, fighting, aggression and anger (Barber & Delfabbro, 2000; Hanna & Bond, 2006; Hawkins, Catalano, & Miller, 1992; Ingoldsby, Shaw, Winslow, Schonberg, Gilliom, & Criss, 2006). The amount of conflict is typically rated on Likert-type scales.
For example, Dixon, Garber, and Brooks-Gunn (2008) assessed conflict as occurring from monthly to daily and/or Bradford, Vaughn, & Barber (2008) assessed conflict from never to almost every day. The intensity of conflict is also rated on Likert-type scales, such as from not heated to very heated (Dixon, Garber, & Brooks-Gunn, 2008), and from calm to angry (Prinz, Foster, Kent, & O’Leary, 1979). Parent-adolescent conflict is defined in the current study, as the amount and intensity of openly expressed anger, disagreement, and argument between children or adolescents and their parents regarding the use of the Internet and general matters. 2 Parent-Adolescent Closeness Parent-adolescent closeness has been determined by the amount of continuing contact between parents and adolescents (Buchanan, Maccoby, & Dornbusch, 1991), the degree of feelings of closeness with each other (Buchanan, Maccoby, & Dornbusch, 1991, 1996; Olson, Sprenkle, & Russell, 1979) and/or closeness characterized by open communication, positive feelings and expressed affection (Ramirez, 1997). Many researchers have measured closeness through cohesion (Olson, Sprenkle, & Russell, 1979; Richmond & Stocker, 2006; Rivera, Guarnaccia, Mulvaney-Day, et al. 2008; Steinberg, 1998), emotional bonding (Hovey & King, 1996; Kapinus & Gorman, 2004; Salgado de Snyder, 1987), as well as togetherness, unity, and closeness (Lindahl & Malik, 2000). Also, closeness has been measured through connectedness, parental support, and warmth as a dimension of parenting (Feldman & Brown, 1993; Miller, Benson, & Galbraith, 2001; Resnick, Bearman, Blum, Bauman, Harris, Jones, et al. , 1997). In this study, parent-adolescent closeness will be assessed as the degree of overall feelings of closeness between parent and adolescent.
Parental expectation has been defined as parent’s ideal for children’s ultimate educational and occupational attainment or a parent’s current expectations for 63 children’s academic performance (Christenson, Rounds, & Gorney, 1992). In this study, parental expectation will be measured to the degree of parent’s aspiration of children’s current academic performance and future educational attainment using the Revised Asian Value Scales (AVS-R; Kim & Hong, 2004).
Adolescent Behavioral Problems
In the larger body of literature, behavioral problems are characterized by both externalizing problems (e. g. , anti-social behavior, aggression, and conduct problems) and internalizing problems (e. g. , depression, anxiety, withdrawal, somatic complaints, and low self-esteem) (Bradford, Vaughn, & Barber, 2008; Choi, He, & Harachi, 2008; Formoso, Gonzales, & Aiken, 2000; Stevens, Vollebergh, Pels, & Crijnen, 2005a, b; Stevens, Vollebergh, Pels, & Crijnen, 2007). Adolescent externalizing and internalizing problems will be used to assess adolescents’ behavioral outcomes in this study.
Academic achievement is defined as the level of individual’s education and/or educational outcomes accomplished successfully, as a result of learning at school. It is usually determined by comparing his or her score on a school test and/or a standardized test with the average score of other people of the same age. Standardized 64 test scores on school tests will be used to define Academic achievement for the purpose of this study. Research Questions and Hypotheses As proposed in the stimulation hypothesis, using the Internet for educational purposes may enhance adolescent’s academic achievement.
On the contrary, based on the time displacement hypothesis, increased amounts of time in non-educational use of the Internet may sacrifice time in educational activities, such as studying, reading, and doing homework. Consequently, using social and/or recreational use of the Internet will result in the displacement of academic activities and will eventually decrease the adolescent’s academic achievement. This study focuses on the relationships among adolescent Internet use, parentadolescent conflict, parent-adolescent closeness, and adolescent’s behavioral outcomes and academic achievement.
Four research questions and hypotheses will be tested in this study. These questions and hypotheses are: Research question 1. Are there gender differences in the nature of Korean adolescents’ Internet use? H1. Boys and girls are different in the frequency and the intensity of educational, social, and recreational use of Internet. 65 Girls Boys Educational Internet use Social Internet use Recreational Internet use Educational Internet use Social Internet use Recreational Internet use
Research question 2-1. Are there direct effects of adolescents’ Internet use on their academic achievement and problematic behaviors? H2-1. 1.
Adolescents’ Internet use has a direct effect on their academic achievement. H2-1. 2. Adolescents’ Internet use has a direct effect on their internalizing problematic behaviors. H2-1. 2. Adolescents’ Internet use has a direct effect on their externalizing problematic behaviors. Research question 2-2. Are these direct pathways different for boys and girls? H2-2. 1. Boys and girls are different in the association between adolescents’ Internet use and their academic achievement. H2-2. 2. Boys and girls are different in the association between adolescents’ Internet use and their internalizing problematic behaviors. 66 H2-2. .
Boys and girls are different in the association between adolescents’ Internet use and their externalizing problematic behaviors. Adolescent’s Gender Educational Internet use Social Internet use Recreational Internet use Academic Achievement Behavioral Adjustment The attachment theory suggests that intergenerational relationships have a significant effect upon the child’s academic and behavioral adjustment; previous research evidence indicates that close parent-child relationships are related to positive outcomes in the psychosocial adaptation of children (Hair, Moore, Garrett, Ling, & Cleveland, 2005; Steinberg, 2008).
Parent-adolescent closeness has been positively associated with reduction of problematic behaviors (Fanti, et al. , 2008; Hair, et al. , 2005; Miller, Benson, & Galbraith, 2001) and academic achievement (Amato & Gilbreth, 1999; Englund Egeland, & Collins, 2008). On the contrary, parentadolescent conflict has been positively associated with problematic behaviors and negatively associated with academic achievement (Adams & Laursen, 2007; Lee, Wong, Chow, & McBride-Chang, 2006; Marmorstein & Iacono, 2004). 7 Parent-adolescent closeness may serve as a buffer for adolescents from negative effects of non-educational Internet use on their academic achievement and behavioral adjustment. Conversely, intergenerational conflict is a strong predictor of negative youth outcomes in families from diverse cultural backgrounds (Ong, Phinney, & Dennis, 2006; Rivera, et al. , 2008). Parent-child conflict may also serve as a potential mediator of the relationship between adolescent Internet use and youth adjustment. Research question 3-1.
Does the nature of adolescents’ Internet use affect their academic achievement/ behavioral adjustment through P-A closeness/ conflict (Mediation effects)? H3-1. 1. Adolescents’ Internet use has an effect on academic achievement through parent-adolescent relationships. H3-1. 2. Adolescents’ Internet use has an effect on internalizing behavior problems through parent-adolescent relationships. H3-1. 3. Adolescents’ Internet use has an effect on externalizing behavior problems through parent-adolescent relationships. Research question 3-2. Are these pathways different for boys and girls? (Moderating role of adolescent gender) H3-2. . Boys and girls are different in the pathways from adolescents’ Internet use to their academic achievement through parent-adolescent relationships. 68 H3-2. 2. Boys and girls are different in the pathways from adolescents’ Internet use to their internalizing behavior problems through parent-adolescent relationships. H3-2. 3. Boys and girls are different in the pathways from adolescents’ Internet use to their externalizing behavior problems through parent-adolescent relationships. Adolescent’s Gender Educational Internet use Social Internet use Recreational Internet use Academic Achievement Behavioral Adjustment
The association between parental expectation and children’s academic achievement has been constantly explored and a general conclusion that can be drawn is that academic achievement is consistently correlated with high parental expectations (Boersma & Chapman, 1982; Cohen, 1987, Marjoribanks, 1988; Sandefur, Meier, & Campbell, 2006; Thompson, Alexander, & Entwisle, 1988; Wentzel, 1994). In addition, previous research shows that excessive parental expectation is related with intergenerational conflicts (Dekovic, Noom, & Meeus, 1997; Barber, 1994). Therefore,
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