SMSes, online chatting affect student grades?

London, April 15 (IANS) A US study has suggested children spending long time over texting on social networks and the internet do less well in the classroom.

It found widespread use of media among students — from texting to chatting on cell phones to posting status updates on Facebook — may be taking an academic toll, Daily Mail reported.

The research — one of the first to explore the effects of new media on academic outcomes — found some teenage girls spend nearly half their day being engaged in some form of media use, particularly texting, music, the internet and social networking.

Researchers found media use, in general, was associated with lower grade point averages and other negative academic outcomes.

There were, however, two exceptions — newspaper reading and listening to music — were actually linked to a positive academic performance.

“Most research on media use and academics has focused on adolescents, rather than new college students, or has only examined a few forms of media,” said lead author Jennifer Walsh, of The Miriam Hospital Centre for Behavioural and Preventive Medicine.

“We found women who spend more time using some forms of media report fewer academic behaviours, such as completing homework and attending class, lower academic confidence and more problems affecting their school work, like lack of sleep and substance use.”

For the research, students were asked about their use of 11 forms of media on the average weekday and weekend day during the previous week.

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