Race, gender, and information technology use: the new digital divide

Cyberpsychol Behav. 2008 Aug;11(4):437-42. doi: 10.1089/cpb.2007.0157.


This research examined race and gender differences in the intensity and nature of IT use and whether IT use predicted academic performance. A sample of 515 children (172 African Americans and 343 Caucasian Americans), average age 12 years old, completed surveys as part of their participation in the Children and Technology Project. Findings indicated race and gender differences in the intensity of IT use; African American males were the least intense users of computers and the Internet, and African American females were the most intense users of the Internet. Males, regardless of race, were the most intense videogame players, and females, regardless of race, were the most intense cell phone users. IT use predicted children's academic performance. Length of time using computers and the Internet was a positive predictor of academic performance, whereas amount of time spent playing videogames was a negative predictor. Implications of the findings for bringing IT to African American males and bringing African American males to IT are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • African Americans / psychology*
  • African Americans / statistics & numerical data
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Attitude to Computers*
  • Child
  • Computers / statistics & numerical data*
  • Educational Status
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / psychology*
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internet / statistics & numerical data*
  • Male
  • Sex Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Video Games / statistics & numerical data