The researchers, however, noted that not using a computer at all could also adversely affect performance at school."We have observed a linear increase in school failure in relation to an increase in the hours spent on the computer and less control by parents," said the researchers from Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (UAB) in Spain.

School failure reaches 16 percent among students who use the computer less than one hour a day; 17 per cent for those who use it one to two hours; 20 percent, two to three hours, and 29 percent if they use the computer for more than three hours a day, the findings showed.

Nevertheless, the study showed that not using a computer at all also increases school failure up to 27 percent.The study, based on surveys taken in the 2010/2011 academic year, analysed the use of information and communication technologies by secondary school students, by using a sample of 5,538 students from Catalonia.

The lack of parental control and an intense use of the computer and video games are also associated with a higher index of young people who have suffered from alcohol intoxication or consume cannabis or other toxic substances, the researchers said.

The study was published in the journal Atencin Primaria.


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