Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

Excessive Use of Internet Hurts Grades, Study Shows

Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

Excessive Use of Internet Hurts Grades, Study Shows

Article excerpt

Excessive use of the Internet adversely affects the academic performance of schoolchildren, a survey by the education ministry indicates.

The survey, the results of which the ministry recently released, on the possible relation between children's academic performance and their lifestyles showed that children who spend many hours on the Internet and video games tend to perform poorly in arithmetic, while children who often watch TV news and read newspapers tend to perform well in the Japanese language.

The Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Ministry analyzed national achievement tests given to all students in the sixth grade of primary schools and the third year of middle schools in April. It plans to convey the results of its analysis to each school to help improve teaching methods.

The national tests covered Japanese and mathematics, and each subject included basic comprehension questions and questions to measure applied skills. Students also filled out a questionnaire on their lifestyles, and teachers were asked to answer questions on their teaching methods.

The ministry analyzed the relationship between the amount of time students daily spent online and the average percentage of questions answered correctly in the tests. The analysis showed that more time spent online tended to translate into lower scores. For arithmetic comprehension problems for sixth-grade primary school students, students who answered they "spend less than one hour using the Internet" scored the highest average percentage of correct answers--79.5 percent--while the average for students who used the Internet for "more than four hours" was 68. …

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