The effect of technology use on distraction and safety in high school student pedestrians

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Publication Type honors thesis
School or College College of Social & Behavioral Science
Department Psychology
Faculty Mentor David Strayer
Creator Hoffman, Haley, Coleman, James; Turrill, Jonna; Medeiros-Ward, Nate; Strayer, David
Title The effect of technology use on distraction and safety in high school student pedestrians
Year graduated 2012
Date 2012-05
Description The use of handheld technology in this country has grown at an exponential rate, and as a consequence younger generations are using these devices, often without the necessary precautions. Past research has shown that technology use presents an obvious distraction to drivers and pedestrians and poses a threat to the user's safety. This paper explores the effect of this distraction, as well as any other distractions on the safety of high school students as they cross the street before and after school. The results include 93 students that were observed at East High School in Salt Lake City, UT. The presence of the observer was unknown to students in order to obtain the most naturalistic results. Safety was measured on three dimensions: whether or not the students looked both ways before crossing, if the student stopped at the edge of the crosswalk, and a subjective measure of whether or not the student was paying attention while crossing. The overall safety measure scores were compared between students who were talking on the cell phone, texting, listening to an iPod, accompanied by a friend, or had no distractions at all. Results showed that any form of distraction while crossing was less safe than when there was no distraction at all. Results also showed that texting was the most distracting form of technology, and being accompanied by a friend was the least distracting. Exploring this trend is crucial in providing the necessary information to raise awareness and increase education about safe crossing behavior, technology use, and safety in adolescents and pedestrians.
Type Text
Publisher University of Utah
Subject Technology - Safety measures; Adolescent behavior
Language eng
Rights Management (c) Haley Hoffman; James Coleman; Jonna Turrill; Nate mederiros-Ward; David Strayer
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 149,505 bytes
Permissions Reference URL
ARK ark:/87278/s6j70s5n
Setname ir_htoa
Date Created 2016-10-13
Date Modified 2021-05-06
ID 205784
Reference URL
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