Term of Award

Spring 2024

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Digital Commons@Georgia Southern License


College of Education

Committee Chair

Daniel Chapman

Committee Member 1

John Weaver

Committee Member 2

Ming Fang He

Committee Member 3

Julie Garlen

Committee Member 3 Email



In 2007, we hardly anticipated the ubiquity of Smartphones in high school classrooms. This dissertation explores Problematic Smartphone Use impact on Adolescent students’ learning and how their preoccupation and reliance on Smartphones influences Creativity, Empathy, Attention, and Solitude (or their ability to be alone). Through my discussion with colleagues and conversations with students in various states and academic settings, I learned that many students who spend so much time on their phones are dissatisfied with their academic success. I observed that students were frustrated with their inability to self-regulate; they do not like to be without their phones throughout the day; there is less divergence in their responses on creative assignments. I see less Empathy reflected in their writing about literature, whether topics or characters, and decreased Empathy for people face-to-face. Students seem less open-minded and willing to consider other ideas or belief systems, and more students do not like to risk being "wrong" or think differently. They are more likely to agree with a wrong answer or questionable stance than state something contrary to the opinion. Finally, they struggle to pay attention, and the length of time they can follow along in class with aural accompaniment or read aloud has decreased, and the number of pages they will read at home has decreased. More research on Adolescents’ Smartphone use and the interplay of Self-efficacy, Self-regulation, and metacognition is necessary, as technology advancements are continuous. We need to protect the humanness of children.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material