Media multitasking is associated with distractibility and increased prefrontal activity in adolescents and young adults

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Moisala , M , Salmela , V , Hietajarvi , L , Salo , E , Carlson , S , Salonen , O , Lonka , K , Hakkarainen , K , Salmela-Aro , K & Alho , K 2016 , ' Media multitasking is associated with distractibility and increased prefrontal activity in adolescents and young adults ' , NeuroImage , vol. 134 , pp. 113-121 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.04.011

Title: Media multitasking is associated with distractibility and increased prefrontal activity in adolescents and young adults
Author: Moisala, M.; Salmela, V.; Hietajarvi, L.; Salo, E.; Carlson, S.; Salonen, O.; Lonka, K.; Hakkarainen, K.; Salmela-Aro, K.; Alho, K.
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Teacher Education
University of Helsinki, Behavioural Sciences
University of Helsinki, Teacher Education
University of Helsinki, Behavioural Sciences
University of Helsinki, Medicum
University of Helsinki, Clinicum
University of Helsinki, Teacher Education
University of Helsinki, Behavioural Sciences
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Education Common Matters
University of Helsinki, Behavioural Sciences
Date: 2016-07-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 9
Belongs to series: NeuroImage
ISSN: 1053-8119
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/224070
Abstract: The current generation of young people indulges in more media multitasking behavior (e.g., instant messaging while watching videos) in their everyday lives than older generations. Concerns have been raised about how this might affect their attentional functioning, as previous studies have indicated that extensive mediamultitasking in everyday life may be associated with decreased attentional control. In the current study, 149 adolescents and young adults (aged 13-24 years) performed speech-listening and reading tasks that required maintaining attention in the presence of distractor stimuli in the othermodality or dividing attention between two concurrent tasks. Brain activity during task performance was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). We studied the relationship between self-reported daily media multitasking (MMT), task performance and brain activity during task performance. The results showed that in the presence of distractor stimuli, a higher MMT score was associated with worse performance and increased brain activity in right prefrontal regions. The level of performance during divided attention did not depend on MMT. This suggests that daily media multitasking is associated with behavioral distractibility and increased recruitment of brain areas involved in attentional and inhibitory control, and that media multitasking in everyday life does not translate to performance benefits in multitasking in laboratory settings. (C) 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Subject: Media multitasking
Attention
Prefrontal cortex
fMRI
WORKING-MEMORY
SUSTAINED ATTENTION
RESPONSE-INHIBITION
COGNITIVE CONTROL
FRONTAL LESIONS
PERFORMANCE
CORTEX
BRAIN
LIFE
PLASTICITY
515 Psychology
516 Educational sciences
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