Learning a new technology can be a challenge for any age, but for the majority of older adults this is truly a daunting task. This in-depth study contradicts many articles that claim the ease in which Senior Citizens are able to learn to use tablets. The study is detailed in the journal ‘Computers in Human Behavior’ as noted in the article.
New research from Doctors Kate Magsamen-Conrad and John Dowd, assistant professors of communication at Bowling Green State University, and graduate students Shrinkhala Upadhyaya and Claire Youngnyo Joa, looked at tablet acceptance and use across multiple generations.
Main goals of the study were to better understand generational differences related to tablet use and to predict individuals’ behavioral intentions to use the devices. Four determinants were tested: performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence and facilitation conditions among 899 respondents aged 19-99.
Unique characteristics of sample group in both age and user experience. The tech-savvy millennial who is constantly connected and the lower range of non-savvy, with almost 6% reporting they do not understand what a tablet is. The relationship between age and attitudes towards technology is also predominantly negative, meaning that as the age of individuals’ increases, their negative attitudes towards technology increase.
Even though tablet technologies have evolved, the resources that would help individuals less technically literate to use tablets (or any new technology) are greatly lacking.
The researchers stated “Some of the users have relatively high levels of anxiety or difficulty when they are introduced to new technologies. Such concerns related to the issue of the digital divide and ageism stress the need for lowering elder’ level of expected efforts for using new technology. Because the use of technology has transformed the workforce, educational practices, leisure activities, and specifically health services, technology training programs, and overall improved technology literacy, may help ease older individuals’ daily living.”
The study results fully support their belief in the need for training programs designed to address these issues.
Read Article (Staff | sciencedaily.com | 04/29/2015)
Social City Net was not involved in this study even though it may appear so. This study also shows the lack of digital literacy assistance provided by the mobile industry for these individuals, and need for the hybrid service we offer.
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