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Electronic Media and Families Division

The Electronic Media and Families Division was established at the Zigler Center in 2006 and is directed by Dorothy Singer and Jerome Singer. The division consults with students, faculty and educators in the community who are interested in research in electronic media. It also considers broader social policy implications of research in the areas of play and electronic media.

We consult with various media industry people in the development of new programs for television and computers. We are also advisors to various media projects carrying on research in the field. One recent project dealt with using DVDs and videos to teach parents, teachers and home child care providers imaginative games that include material to ready preschoolers for kindergarten. We also recently completed a study on children's pastimes and play in sixteen nations. Findings indicated a surprising similarity across the various nations. The study will be published in the American Journal of Play in early 2009.

We are particularly interested in the effects of the media on children’s social, emotional and cognitive development. We have developed curricula to educate youth about the media. These materials are currently used in schools throughout the country.