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Digital Equity: Technology and Learning in the Lives of Lower-Income Families

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On February 3, 2016, the Joan Ganz Cooney Center and Rutgers University presented Digital Equity: Technology and Learning in the Lives of Lower-Income Families at a forum co-hosted by New America in Washington, D.C.

The event highlighted the release of "Opportunity for All? Technology and Learning in Lower-Income Families" by Victoria Rideout and Vikki S. Katz.

Recent research on digital media use points to two important gaps in educational opportunity for low-income families with young children. First, there is an access gap. Second, there is what scholars refer to as a participation gap, in which digital resources are not well guided or supported to ensure educational progress. Despite these barriers, many low-income families are using media and new technologies in creative ways to support their children’s pathways to success and to strengthen family relationships. In this report, media and policy expert Victoria Rideout and Rutgers University scholar Vikki Katz explore the current uses of digital technologies to help promote educational opportunities for all through a national survey of nearly 1,200 low-income parents of school-age children and in-person interviews with lower-income, Hispanic families in three communities located in Arizona, California, and Colorado.

Find the full report here: http://www.joanganzcooneycenter.org/publication/opportunity-for-all-technology-and-learning-in-lower-income-families/

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Digital Equity: Technology and Learning in the Lives of Lower-Income Families

  1. 1. Digital Equity Technology and Learning in the Lives of Lower-Income Families February 3, 2016 A forum presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, Rutgers University, and New America www.joanganzcooneycenter.org www.digitalequityforlearning.org
  2. 2. Opportunity for All? Michael H. Levine Executive Director, Joan Ganz Cooney Center February 3, 2016
  3. 3. The Families and Media Project
  4. 4. The LIFE Center: Stevens & Penuel, 2010 The Families and Media Project
  5. 5. Ecological Perspective on Learning 5 Bronfenbrenner (1979); Takeuchi (2011) Governme nt Agencies Digital Media Market Local School System Church, Library, After-school Spaces Digital Media Spaces The Neighborhoo d Dominant Beliefs Cultural Values Mass Media Parents’ Work Home, Parent s, Sibling s Attitudes & Ideologies National & State Policy School, Teachers, Peers
  6. 6. The Families and Media Project Project Priorities: • Research in real life settings • Quantitative and qualitative methods • Underserved populations (especially Hispanic-Latino families) Research Partners: • The Joan Ganz Cooney Center • LIFE, AARP, Northwestern, Rutgers, Stanford, Arizona State, Sesame Workshop
  7. 7. DIGITAL EQUITY Technology and Learning in the Lives of Lower-income Families February 3, 2016 A forum presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, Rutgers University, and New America www.joanganzcooneycenter.org www.digitalequityforlearning.org
  8. 8. SURVEY RESULTS Opportunity for all?: Technology and learning in lower-income families February 3, 2016
  9. 9. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Nationally-representative telephone survey  Nearly 1,200 respondents  All parents with children ages 6-13  All below national median income ($65,000) • 31% below federal poverty level ($24,000/family of 4) • 42% >FPL but <185% FPL • 24% >185% FPL but =/< median ($65,000) METHODOLOGY
  10. 10. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Race/ethnicity of this population: • 47% White, 30% Hispanic, 16% Black, 7% Other  Among Hispanic population: • 62% are immigrants • 53% are primarily Spanish-speaking METHODOLOGY
  11. 11. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  “Any internet access” means have a home computer with Internet service, or a smart mobile device  “Home access” means have a home computer with Internet service (laptop or desktop)  “Mobile-only access” means have a smartphone or tablet, but no home computer METHODOLOGY
  12. 12. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 VAST MAJORITY ARE CONNECTED  Among parents of 6-13 year-olds, percent who have some type of Internet access: 94% 91% 90% Among all Among those below FPL Among Immigrant Hispanics
  13. 13. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Among parents of 6-13 year-olds, percent who have each type of Internet access: MANY ARE UNDER-CONNECTED 66% 5% 23% 48% 8% 33% 35% 12% 41% High-speed home access Dial-up home access Mobile-only access Among all Among those < FPL Among immigrant Hispanics
  14. 14. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 33% 51% 64% Among all Among those below FPL Among Immigrant Hispanics  Among parents of 6-13 year-olds, total percent who have dial-up, mobile-only, or no access: MANY ARE UNDER-CONNECTED
  15. 15. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Among those with home access, percent who have experienced each problem during the past 12 months: EVEN THE CONNECTED HAVE LIMITATIONS AND INTERRUPTIONS IN SERVICE 33% 26% 20% Service too slow Too many people share computer Service cut off due to inability to pay
  16. 16. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 EVEN THE CONNECTED HAVE LIMITATIONS AND INTERRUPTIONS IN SERVICE  Among those with mobile-only access, percent who have experienced each problem during the past 12 months: 29% 24% 21% Hit data limits Service cut off due to inability to pay Too many people share device
  17. 17. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 IMMIGRANT HISPANICS ARE THE MOST LIKELY TO BE UNDER-CONNECTED  Among parents of 6-13 year-olds below the median income, percent who: 20% 41% 44% 4% 16% 17% 2% 25% 17% 4% 17% 19% Don't go online at all Have mobile-only Internet access Don't use computers at all Immigrant Hispanics Whites Blacks US-born Hispanics
  18. 18. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 COST IS THE MAIN FACTOR DRIVING LACK OF ACCESS  Among those without home Internet access, percent who say each of the following is the main reason why (open-ended question): 42% 13% 12% 9% 5% Too expensive Don't need it Access through mobile devices instead Service too slow in their community Use computers/Internet elsewhere
  19. 19. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 VERY FEW HAVE BEEN REACHED BY LOW-COST OPTIONS Have ever used 6% Have never used 94%  Among those below 185% of poverty, percent who have ever used low -cost Internet service plans designed for those with income eligibility:
  20. 20. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 USE OF COMPUTERS AND INTERNET AT PUBLIC LIBRARIES  Among those without a computer or home Internet access, percent who use those services at public libraries: 14% 8% 29% 21% Among children Among parents Often Sometimes 43% 29%
  21. 21. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 FAMILIES COLLABORATE TO LEARN WITH TECHNOLOGY  Among families in which parents and children both use computers or the Internet, percent in which: 77% 53% 81% Parents help their children use digital technology Children help their parents Children help each other + If more than one child in age group +
  22. 22. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 COLLABORATIVE LEARNING IS STRONGEST IN LOWEST-SES HOMES  Percent of children who have helped their parents with tech, by parent education: 62% 45% Less than high school College degree  Percent of children who “often” help each other, by family income: 53% 33% Less than $25,000 $45,000 - $65,000
  23. 23. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 WHAT PARENTS USE THE INTERNET TO DO  Among families that use the Internet, percent of parents who say they use it to: 95% 83% 78% 67% 58% 52% Look for information Stay in touch with family/friends Get news Bank or pay bills online Shop Apply for jobs or services
  24. 24. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016 WHAT CHILDREN USE THE INTERNET TO DO  Among families that use the Internet, percent of children who use it to: 81% 81% 81% 70% 46% 40% Do homework Play educational games Look up things they're interested in Make art or music Collaborate with other students Connect with teachers + + + + + Among 10-13 year-olds
  25. 25. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Percent who use the Internet for each purpose, by type of access: THOSE WITH MOBILE-ONLY ACCESS LESS LIKELY TO USE IT 82% 74% 66% 56% 52% 51% 70% 49% 36% 42% 35% 31% Get news Online banking/bill pay Shop Apply for jobs/services Children look up things they're interested in Children use every day Among those with home access Among those with mobile-only access
  26. 26. Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. February 2016  Percent who use the Internet for each purpose, by type of access: THOSE WITH MOBILE-ONLY ACCESS LESS LIKELY TO USE IT 82% 74% 66% 56% 52% 51% 70% 49% 36% 42% 35% 31% Get news Online banking/bill pay Shop Apply for jobs/services Children look up things they're interested in Children use every day Among those with home access Among those with mobile-only access
  27. 27. DIGITAL EQUITY Technology and Learning in the lives Of Lower-income Families February 3, 2016 A forum presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, Rutgers University, and New America www.joanganzcooneycenter.org www.digitalequityforlearning.org
  28. 28. QUALITATIVE RESULTS: Leveraging Technology for Learning in U.S. Latino Families Vikki Katz Rutgers University ■ February 3, 2016
  29. 29. Study Overview
  30. 30. Qualitative Phase (July 2013 to Feb 2015)  Three predominantly Mexican-heritage, high-poverty school districts in AZ, CA, and CO  In-depth, open-ended interviews with parents and children (N=336)  Member checks with administrators and families  Thematic data analysis  Inductive survey questionnaire development
  31. 31. Family Decisions about Adopting Technology
  32. 32. Family tech adoption: motivations and strategies  Creative strategies and parental sacrifices to provide tech and broadband connections for their children  Calibrated conceptions of connectivity’s risks and rewards: varied by district
  33. 33. Assessing Available Digital Equity Programs
  34. 34.  Programs like C2C broadly under-utilized  Mismatch between family needs and service providers’ perceptions of adequate connectivity Family tech adoption: perceptions and realities
  35. 35. Technology as a Catalyst for Family Learning
  36. 36. Parents and Children as Digital Learning Teams Father of a 5th grader (age 10) We’re a team, and we achieve things together. When I don’t know something, my wife helps, or we ask our other son. We solve the problem together. In that aspect, technology has helped us, because it has made us closer.
  37. 37. Qualitative Phase: Veronica and Teresa Sometimes when I have homework on the computer, I ask my mom and she helps me—and she learns a little bit more. - Veronica (age 12) When I can’t find a website, they take the computer from me and do it themselves….I have to ask them to teach me [how to find it myself], and that’s when they help me. - Teresa
  38. 38. digitalequityforlearning.org
  39. 39. DIGITAL EQUITY Technology and Learning in the lives Of Lower-income Families February 3, 2016 A forum presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, Rutgers University, and New America www.joanganzcooneycenter.org www.digitalequityforlearning.org

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