Blog: Latino Ed Beat

Study Shows Latino Students More Dependent on Mobile Devices for Homework Help

Latino students are more likely to use mobile devices while working on their homework than white or black students, concludes a new study on technology use by middle school students.

The youth polling group TRU conducted a national survey funded by the Verizon Foundation to make the findings. About 1,000 sixth- through eighth-graders were surveyed.

In addition, the report found that among Latino middle school students, about 68 percent used laptops for homework, compared with 64 percent of black students and 62 percent of white students.

About 38 percent of Hispanic students used tablets for homework, compared with 30 percent of black students and 31 percent of white students.

Lastly, about 49 percent of Latino students reporting using smart phones for homework, compared with 42 percent of black students and 36 percent of white students. Hispanics also reported using the technology to study more often than other students and more frequently used technology on a weekly basis.

Meanwhile, few students reported using mobile technology at school. Verizon supported the study and said that their purpose was to better understand how to support using mobile technology in the classroom.

What do you think accounts for the disparity of Hispanic students reporting higher technology use?

A 2010 study by the Pew Hispanic Center found that Latino cell phone users were more likely than white users to use their cell phones to go online, email and instant message. However, Latinos were less likely to have a home internet connection.

Pew also noted that cell phone ownership is higher among Latinos and blacks than whites. So Latinos may use mobile technology for more purposes as a result.