Mobile Phones and Distractions

Mobile Phones and Distractions

There is no doubt that the development of mobile phone remains an essential breakthrough in advancing the human communication process. However, with the plethora of choices, individuals are at the risk of experiencing mobile phone addiction. Hence, research studies on the use and dependence of mobile devices among different users are of great significance in showcasing how technology, especially phones, cause distractions and eventually a lowered performance among people. The primary psychological concern of most research studies on the topic of mobile phones addiction is always to unearth the problems that phone addiction can have on a person’s well-being.

The article titled Digital Devices, Distraction, and Student Performance: Does In-Class Cell Phone Use Reduce Learning? By Duncan, Hoekstra & Wilcox (2012) address the recent increase of digital devices that have led to concerns of students’ performance. By using data from introductory science courses at a major university, the authors realised that there is a negative correlation between the use of cellphones and students’ final grades. The study is consistent with the previous research on phones and distractions since it explains that students’ inability to multitask makes them register lower grades in schools. Generally, the study agrees with other researches that mobile phones are a source of distractions and can cause psychological problems such as low concentration levels which are associated with addiction.

The second article titled The distraction effects of phone use during a crucial driving maneuver by Hancock, Lesch, & Simmons (2003), reveals that phones cause distractions to drivers while on the road. The study relied on data from forty-two licensed drivers who confirmed that they were guilty of stop light violations when they encountered a phone distraction. Like the first study, their research aimed at revealing the dangerous effects that phone distraction can have on drivers due to their inability to multitask. The findings of the study are relevant to the above research topic since they help in the comprehension of the detrimental effects of phones to a person’s concentration, and thus point to the need to minimize the excessive use of phones while driving. The authors in the above article argue that phone distraction affects the performance safety of drivers by limiting their ability to focus on the road and control the vehicle effectively.

The third article titled Cell-Phone–Induced Driver Distraction Current Directions in Psychological Science by Strayer & Drews (2007) realized that in-vehicle conversations had limited interference on the driver’s level of concentration as compared to the cell phone conversations. This is because, for the in-vehicle conversation, the driver can comfortably concentrate ahead even as they go on with their conversations. The opposite occurs for those drivers who have to use the mobile phone physically because the process of getting and accepting or making these calls makes them unable to concentrate which in most cases results in accidents. The article supports the other two articles by emphasizing the need to limit cellphone use, especially in attention demanding situations such as driving or learning processes, since the psychological impact of using mobile phones during these activities may be dire.

In conclusion, the three articles are essential in the study on the adverse effects on the use of mobile phones on concentration and addiction levels. These articles reveal that most individuals are always unable to multitask when using mobile phones. These studies are, therefore, essential to adequately analyze the impact of the mobile phone on an individual’s concentration and addiction levels.



Duncan, D. K., Hoekstra, A. R., & Wilcox, B. R. (2012). Digital devices, distraction, and student

performance: Does in-class cell phone use reduce learning?  Astronomy education review11(1).

Hancock, P. A., Lesch, M., & Simmons, L. (2003). The distraction effects of phone use during a

crucial driving maneuver. Accident Analysis & Prevention35(4), 501-514.

Strayer, D. L., & Drews, F. A. (2007). Cell-phone–induced driver distraction. Current Directions

in Psychological Science16(3), 128-131.