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Teens and technology
Technology and access to information have changed rapidly in the late 20th and early 21st century than at any other time in human history. Teenagers live in a world increasingly defined by high-tech multitasking, and evidence indicates that's affecting their brain development.
Even without any laptops, tablets, smartphones or mobile devices, the brain of a teenager is undergoing several changes. Modern teens have such constant access to high technology and information that scientists suspect their brains are developing in ways not experienced by previous generations.
One common concern about teens and technology is that teens accustomed to constant multitasking on a variety of different devices will never develop the ability to slow down and think. They might become experts at doing four or five tasks at once without ever mastering any of them, or being able to focus long enough to understand any of them.
A teenager capable of engaging in two different online chats while watching Youtube, following Facebook updates and working on homework at the same time, might develop skills that will be crucial to career success in the workplaces of the future.
There is a study aimed at measuring the changes in the brains of young people as they grow up in a lifestyle based on constantly adapting to new technologies, which describes such young people as 'digital natives'.
A digital native is a person who is accustommed to rapid technological change that they can effortlessly adapt right along with it, for better or for worse. It might be that both sides of the debate are right and that new technologies are changing the brains of teenagers in ways that are both positive and negative at the same time.
Adapted from: www.livestrong.com