"The Only 13- Year Old on Planet Earth Without a Cell Phone": Meanings of Cell Phones in Early Adolescents' Everyday Lives

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Bethany L. Blair (Creator)
Anne C. Fletcher, Associate Professor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: Cellular telephones have become an increasingly prevalent feature of contemporary American life, with usage often beginning during early adolescence. With this in mind, twenty 7th graders and their mothers participated in separate qualitative interviews regarding early adolescents’ use of cell phones as well as perceived risks and benefits of such use. Analyses indicated that early adolescents and their mothers imbued cell phones with a variety of psychological meanings. These meanings included cell phones as a source of connection to family and friends, cell phones as facilitators of adolescent autonomy development, and cell phones as sources of social status. These findings are discussed in relation to psychosocial developmental tasks occurring in early adolescence.

Additional Information

Publication
Language: English
Date: 2011
Keywords
cellular phones, adolescent development, parental monitoring, peer relations, parent-child relations, autonomy