Screen-exposure and altered brain activation related to attention in preschool children: An EEG study

Michal Zivan, Sapir Bar, Xiang Jing, John Hutton, Rola Farah, Tzipi Horowitz-Kraus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Exposure to screens has been shown to reduce attention span in children. Increased slow-wave (theta band) and decreased fast-wave (beta and gamma bands) generated from EEG, as well as increased theta/beta ratio, have been observed in children with Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity-Disorder (ADHD). This study examined the relationship between 6-weeks screen exposure and attention abilities in typically developing preschoolers using EEG during rest. Theta and beta bands were compared, and visual attention and parental reports for attention abilities were controlled. Results suggested that the active control group showed improved visual-attention abilities following the exposure to stories, whereas the screen group did not show improved visual attention. EEG results suggested a higher connectivity in theta vs. beta bands in the screen group, but not in the control group. Results support the negative relationship between screen exposure and attention-related patterns generated from EEG in typically developing preschool children.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100117
JournalTrends in Neuroscience and Education
StatePublished - Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier GmbH


  • Attention
  • Child development
  • EEG
  • Screen exposure


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