Education and Information Technologies

, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 863–886 | Cite as

Technology and adolescents: Perspectives on the things to come

  • Raul L. KatzEmail author
  • Max Felix
  • Madlen Gubernick


Assuming that, given the processes of technology diffusion, adolescent behavior forecasts future consumption of digital information, it would seem pertinent to study the characteristics of teenager technology use. This research asks: What are the key patterns regarding the use of technology platforms by teenagers? Is technology usage among teenagers shaped by schools' disparate teaching philosophies and cultures? How is technology usage impacting the consumption of traditional print media? A survey designed to determine how high school students use technology was administered at a private boarding school in New Hampshire and a public school in New York. The research concluded that individuals' residing environment and context shape ICT adoption. School culture and geographic context drive behavioral technology usage patterns. Furthermore, consumption of information appears to be guided by a principle of complementarity. However, technology substitution should not be discarded. Finally, school culture incorporating and promoting technology use may contribute positively to knowledge acquisition, although technology adoption without controls could negatively impact the teaching experience. While directionally valid, the study results need to be validated by statistical research and case studies.


Information technology Adolescent usage Learning environment Social media 



The authors would like to acknowledge the support provided by Mr. Peter J. Karp, Principal at the Institute for Collaborative Education in New York, and Mr. Thomas Bazos, Dean of Students at the St. Paul’s School. in Concord, NH. Additionally, the authors would like to acknowledge research support by Taylor Berry, from the Columbia Institute for Tele-Information, as well as the feedback of three anonymous reviewers.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Finance and Economics, Business Strategy Research, Columbia Institute for Tele-InformationColumbia Business School, Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.St. Paul’s SchoolConcordUSA
  3. 3.Institute for Collaborative EducationNew YorkUSA

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