Resources & Research

hand holding cell phone in front of laptop
Peter Lenzini, De Smet Jesuit

We have provided a number of the resources that we have used to educate ourselves about this important issue. We hope you find them helpful.

Effects of Cell Phone Use: Student Focus, Brain Activity and More

To explore some of the academic research on the effects of cell phones and other technologies on student focus, performance, and brain activity please see the following online articles:

Brain Drain: The Mere Presence of One’s Own Smartphone Reduces Available Cognitive Capacity
This is a study of the effects of cell phone proximity to a student on available working memory and functional fluid intelligence.

Costly Cell Phones: The Impact of Cell Phone Rings on Academic Performance

Dividing Attention in the Classroom Reduces Exam Performance
This is a study which found that multitasking with a device during class time affected student performance on exams.

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

Higher Media Multi-Tasking Activity Is Associated with Smaller Gray-Matter Density in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex
This is a very interesting though preliminary study of the effects of multi-tasking on grey matter density.

Ledger of Harms

  • “Ledger of Harms.” Ledger of Harms, 14 Dec. 2018,

Relations of Bedtime Mobile Phone Use to Cognitive Functioning, Academic Performance, and Sleep Quality in Undergraduate Students

The Myth of Multitasking

From Pope Francis

For more on what Pope Francis has written about technology in the digital age, please refer to these online articles:

From Influencers to Cyborgs, Pope Francis Has Tech Advice for Young People

To Young People and to the Entire People of God

  • Francis. “‘Christus Vivit’: Post-Synodal Exhortation to Young People and to the Entire People of God (25 March 2019): Francis.” "Christus Vivit": Post-Synodal Exhortation to Young People and to the Entire People of God (25 March 2019) | Francis,

The Dopamine Loop

For more research on the Dopamine Loop, please refer to these online articles:

The Dopamine Seeking-Reward Loop

Dopamine, Smartphones & You: A Battle for Your Time

  • Haynes, Trevor. “Dopamine, Smartphones & You: A Battle for Your Time.” Science in the News, 27 Feb. 2019,

To Fight Cell Phone Addiction

For more tips and additional resources on how to manage cell phone use, please refer to these online articles:

Addictive Phone Use and Academic Performance in Adolescents

Coping With Cell Phone Addiction

  • Grohol, John M. “Coping with Cell Phone Addiction.” Psych Central, 8 Oct. 2018,

7 Ways To Curb Your Smartphone Addiction Right Now

Take Control

  • “Take Control.” Center For Humane Technology,

Tools & Reminders For Parents

  • Sossel, Max. "Tools & Reminders For Parents." Center for Human Technology,

Tech Insiders & Intent To Addict

For more on the tech insider perspective, the intent behind some cell phone and app designs, and the impact of the proliferation of cell phones and technology, please refer to these online articles.

A Dark Consensus About Screens and Kids Begins to Emerge in Silicon Valley

Facebook’s First President, on Facebook: ‘God Only Knows What It’s Doing to Our Children’s Brains’

‘Our Minds Can Be Hijacked’: The Tech Insiders Who Fear a Smartphone Dystopia

Tristan Harris: Tech Is 'Downgrading Humans.' It's Time to Fight Back

What Is ‘Brain Hacking’? Tech Insiders on Why You Should Care