Study Says Kids Prefer eBooks Over Print

Kids prefer eBooks over print books

via Digital Book World

A new study indicates that kids prefer eBooks to print books. No surprise there, right? Although it did reveal some interesting things about comprehension between print and digital. 

The Joan Ganz Cooney Center conducted a QuickStudy (so named because of the short duration and small sample) that observed 24 families with children ranging from ages 3 to 6, as they read both print and eBooks. Most of the children preferred reading an eBook, and the comprehension level between electronic and print were pretty much the same.

But between regular eBooks and enhanced eBooks, comprehension dropped off. Children recalled fewer of the details from the enhanced eBooks, which generally include interactive features and games. 

Carly Shuler, a senior consultant at the center, offered the following explanation: 

Kids were more focused on tapping things and that took away from their comprehension as well as the interaction between the parent and the child.

That's surprising. In my completely uninformed and uneducated opinion, I would have assumed that kids would engage at a deeper level with an interactive book. But I guess all the extra features are a distraction. 

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Renee Miller's picture
Renee Miller from Tweed, Ontario is reading The Wolf Gift January 11, 2012 - 3:02pm

Interactive readers seem silly to me. Why put shit on there when the point of reading is to get lost in the words and in your own imagination. Interactive is kind of like...not really reading. Well, it's a mixture of reading and television I suppose.

We thought getting my 13 year old an e-reader would be a great idea. You know, get her off the internet and such. So we got the Kobo, made sure it was not interactive and we were quite pleased with ourselves. Christmas morning she opened it, and an hour later we realized she was online...using her e-reader. Sigh.

Kirk's picture
Kirk from Pingree Grove, IL is reading The Book Of The New Sun January 11, 2012 - 7:56pm

Well look at that, perhaps I'm not old afterall! I prefer eReaders at this point. 

I can see interactive books as being too overwhelming, especially for a lot of topics. But I do think they are probably better for others. For instance, look at some of the medical or biology books on iPad. Those things are awesome and provide you with a great way to explore topics that are difficult to follow with old-school line drawings. 3D anatomy rules.

RealityDisease's picture
RealityDisease January 11, 2012 - 9:14pm

i couldn't comprehend a bit of this article as it scrolled across my monitor.  just kept thinking, "what kind of awesome e-reader IS that?!?"

polisella's picture
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