Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Department Chair

Jessica Glass Kendorski Ph.D., NCSP, BCBA-D

First Advisor

Virginia Salzer, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

George McCloskey, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Michael Ramsteck, Psy.D.


School-aged children are increasingly growing up in a technology-driven society. The amount of time children spend engaged with screens is problematic, as is the subsequent impact on the development of their executive functioning skills. The current study investigated the feasibility of an online, asynchronous, family-based intervention to limit screen usage for elementary-aged children. It was hypothesized that removing screens from children’s bedrooms and one hour before bedtime was a feasible strategy to limit screen use and would result in positive behavior change, specifically regarding the ability to self-cue the use of executive skills. Additionally, it was hypothesized that an online asynchronous informative intervention effectively supports caregivers in implementing strategies to limit children’s screen time use before bed. Four families engaged in a four-week online asynchronous intervention and data was collected through weekly discussion posts, culminating semi-strictured interview, and the McCloskey Executive Functions Scale (MEFS), completed pre- and post-intervention. While the sample size was small, results suggest that removing screens from the bedroom and before bedtime is a feasible strategy for families aiming to limit their children’s screen usage. Additionally, results suggest a positive behavioral change in children after the removal of screens before bedtime. However, given the low participation rate, an online asynchronous intervention may not be the most effective method to support families in implementing screen limits. These findings add to the research on the negative impact on executive functioning development of screen usage in children and regarding recommendations on promoting healthy screen practices in the home.

Included in

Psychology Commons