Communication Quarterly vol:62 issue:1 pages:57-74
This study investigates predictors and consequences associated with the use of television as a babysitter for young children. Survey data of 844 children between the ages of six months and six years are analyzed using structural equation modeling. Parents’ attitude toward television emerged as best predictor of using television as a babysitter, which in turn predicted increased time spent watching television. Children of parents with strong positive attitude toward television and, unexpectedly, children of parents with more education are at greater risk for increased television viewing if they are put in front of the television for being occupied.