Cognition, Attitudes, and the Use of Digital Technologies : – a Structural Analysis Study

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http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-202109013608
Title: Cognition, Attitudes, and the Use of Digital Technologies : – a Structural Analysis Study
Author: Michelsson, Erica
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Medicine
Publisher: Helsingin yliopisto
Date: 2021
Language: eng
URI: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-202109013608
http://hdl.handle.net/10138/333904
Thesis level: master's thesis
Degree program: Psykologian maisteriohjelma
Master's Programme in Psychology
Magisterprogrammet i psykologi
Specialisation: Suomenkielinen opintolinja
Study orientation in Finnish
Finskspråkig studieinriktning
Abstract: nformation and computer technologies (ICT), and to assess the relationships of cognitive ability and key factors relating to ICT use and attitudes. This study assessed a number of ICT related factors including internet addiction, smartphone and tablet use, social media use, computer self-efficacy, negative attitudes towards ICT, positive expectations towards ICT, and ICT use for work. Methods: The study sample was part of the PLASTICITY (Perinatal Adverse events and Special Trends in Cognitive Trajectory) -study. The sample consisted of a Finnish cohort born between 1971–1974 (n = 546), who lived through the ICT diffusion era. Multidimensional item response theory (MIRT) was used to assess the structural composition of the ICT-questionnaire. Cognitive abilities were measured with The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC) when the examinees were 9 years old, and with Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Fourth Edition (WAIS-IV) when the examinees were 40-45 years old. Two structural equation models were created to describe the associations between subjective wealth, education, cognitive ability and the ICTQ factors. The model with adulthood cognitive abilities predicting ICT use was compared to the model with childhood cognitive abilities predicting adulthood ICT use. Results and discussion: ICT use and attitudes were affected by cognitive ability, education, and wealth, and computer self-efficacy and negative attitudes towards ICT emerged as central mediators in the social cognitive model of ICT use. Cognitive ability predicted four of the seven ICT factors: computer self-efficacy, negative attitudes towards ICT, computer use for work, and indirectly the use of smartphones and tablets. Cognitive ability did not predict internet addiction, social media use, and ICT hobbies, or positive expectations towards ICT. Based on the mediation analysis, some of this effect is likely to be attributable to the other consequences of cognitive ability, including education and wealth. However, at least some seem to reflect more direct cognitive selectivity, perhaps due to the verbal and information-processing skill demands of the ICT. Furthermore, cognitive ability measured during childhood, decades before the individuals were introduced to ICT, was as significant as a predictor for negative attitudes towards ICT and computer self-efficacy, as adulthood cognitive abilities. Overall, the results imply that cognitive ability is not associated with access to ICT, but affects the predispositions to use technology and the acquisition of ICT skills.
Subject: igital divide
excessive use of ICT
internet addiction
attitudes
computer self-efficacy
cognition
intelligence


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