Donald F. Roberts Was First to Study the Media-Multitasking Phenomenon
Columbia, Mo. (Sept. 17, 2012) — A noted expert on the media habits of young people is serving as a distinguished visiting scholar at the Missouri School of Journalism for the fall semester.
Professor Emeritus of Communication Donald F. Roberts served on the faculty of Stanford University from 1968 through 2009. He directed the Institute for Communication Research and chaired the department at various times during his tenure there.
Roberts’ research examines how children and adolescents use and respond to the mass media, a topic on which he has written extensively. His series of national surveys of young people’s media use, conducted over the past decade under the auspices of the Kaiser Family Foundation, were the first to examine young people’s use of all media, such as print, audio, TV, computers, mobile phones, and to document and explore the media-multitasking phenomenon.
“Researchers at Missouri have made extensive use of Roberts’ developmental work, as have so many others around the world,” said Esther Thorson, the journalism graduate dean.
Roberts shared his findings during a recent presentation at the School called “Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8-to-18 Year Olds.”
The School’s doctoral faculty selects each semester’s distinguished visiting scholar.