Children and television watching: a qualitative study of New Zealand parents' perceptions and views

Dorey, E., Roberts, V., Maddison, R., Meagher-Lundberg, P., Dixon, R. and Ni Mhurchu, C. 2010, Children and television watching: a qualitative study of New Zealand parents' perceptions and views, Child: care, health and development, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 414-420, doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2214.2009.01031.x.

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Title Children and television watching: a qualitative study of New Zealand parents' perceptions and views
Author(s) Dorey, E.
Roberts, V.
Maddison, R.ORCID iD for Maddison, R.
Meagher-Lundberg, P.
Dixon, R.
Ni Mhurchu, C.
Journal name Child: care, health and development
Volume number 36
Issue number 3
Start page 414
End page 420
Total pages 7
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication Chichester, Eng.
Publication date 2010-05
ISSN 1365-2214
Keyword(s) Adolescent
Focus Groups
Middle Aged
New Zealand
Qualitative Research
Sedentary Lifestyle
Summary BACKGROUND: Television (TV) viewing is one of the most pervasive sedentary pursuits among children and adolescents. Research studies have shown that higher TV viewing hours are associated with a number of negative effects such as being overweight and obese, attention and behavioural problems, and impaired academic performance. Most interventions to reduce time spent watching TV have been school-based and little is known about the strategies that families use to control TV watching time. METHODS: Six focus groups with Māori, Pacific and non-Māori non-Pacific parents were conducted to examine New Zealand parents' perceptions of their children's TV watching. Focus groups explored attitudes towards TV viewing, strategies used to reduce viewing, and opinion on two different electronic monitors that can be used to restrict TV viewing. Focus group discussions were transcribed and a content analysis was conducted. RESULTS: Parents described TV as playing a dominant role in their family's lives, and highlighted several barriers to reducing children's TV viewing, such as parents not willing to reduce their own TV watching, a lack of safe alternatives to TV and the need to use TV as a babysitting tool. Limiting access to TV, making TV viewing a reward and finding alternative activities were current strategies parents employed to limit TV viewing; however, the barriers highlighted by parents make implementing such strategies difficult. Attitudes towards electronic monitor use to reduce TV viewing were mixed, but suggest further investigation of these devices is needed. CONCLUSIONS: Electronic devices that restrict the amount and content of TV viewing have some potential to support interventions and merit further investigation. It is imperative for interventions aimed at reducing TV viewing to consider the role TV plays within a family context, ensuring parental perceptions around the benefits and barriers of reducing TV are accounted for.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2214.2009.01031.x
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2009, Blackwell Publishing
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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