Study determines teens spend less time reading

BY Dave Sloan  May 12, 2014 at 3:41 PM EDT
Photo by Flickr user Casey Fleser

Photo by Flickr user Casey Fleser

Common Sense Media, a San Francisco Non-Profit organization, “>released a new study Monday determining a steep decline in the amount of time teens and young children are committing to reading for pleasure.

According to the study, twenty-seven percent of 17-year-olds in 2013 admitted to only reading for pleasure approximately once or twice a year, where in 1984 only nine percent stated that they “never” or “hardly” read for pleasure. There has also been a rapidly growing trend in the amount of time parents have dedicated reading to their children. In 1999, children from the ages of two to seen spent 45 minutes each day reading, while in 2013 the average dropped to only 30 minutes a day.

One answer researchers believe contributed to the change is the past decade’s “digital revolution.” With the introduction of e-readers, iPads and smartphones, some researchers believe that teens have become less engaged in traditional reading and have grown to rely on the advancement of technology to entertain themselves.

Even with this significant drop in readership, researchers acknowledged that the study did not determine the platforms that children and teens were using. Common Sense Media indicated that past studies have focused on books without acknowledging other mediums. With national tests indicating that reading proficiency levels have risen since 1971, they believe there needs to be more questions asked about the different available reading platforms.