National Survey Finds Kids Give High Marks to High Speed; Internet Considered...

National Survey Finds Kids Give High Marks to High Speed; Internet Considered Crucial for Educational Success

Students overwhelmingly turn to the Internet to find information not provided in school books; majority seek fast connections to complete homework assignmentsChildren credit teachers for Internet knowledge, teens think they know best


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San Antonio, TX–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–August 13, 2004–From elementary to high school, the Internet has revolutionized how and where kids learn, and enhanced their success rate in school. According to a new survey of 6- to 17-year-old students, high-speed Internet access has become a valuable and sought-after resource for schoolwork, with nearly 90 percent of all school-aged children considering a broadband connection like DSL either important or very important for completing school assignments.

The national survey of 1,002 6- to 17-year-olds, conducted for SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE: SBC) was designed to identify usage patterns and attitudes about the Internet for educational purposes. The survey reveals changes in how the Internet is used throughout elementary to high school, providing a unique and in-depth look at their Internet habits and attitudes as they get older.

Internet Helps Kids Succeed in School

Across all age groups, students overwhelmingly believe that having Internet access helps them succeed in school with more than 70 percent of all kids surveyed saying it helps them make better grades and be stronger students.

As children grow older, the Internet becomes even more integral for schoolwork. The survey finds that nine in 10 teens use the Internet to look for information for class assignments and more than 70 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds use it for that purpose.

The study also reveals:

— 80 percent of older students, 12- to 17-year-olds, are given Internet assignments to complete at school, and nearly 65 percent go online at home to complete Internet-related homework.

— Nearly 60 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds are completing Internet projects at school, and more than 30 percent have Internet-related work to complete at home.

Overwhelmingly, school children are using the Internet instead of their textbooks or traditional reference books to complete schoolwork. Survey findings show:

— Among 12- to 17-year-olds, more than four in five use the Internet to look for better information compared with what they can find in their schoolbooks.

— Nearly 60 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds are bypassing the dictionaries, thesauruses and encyclopedias on the bookshelves and going online for these resources.

— More than 30 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds are using online dictionaries, thesauruses and encyclopedias.

Need for Speed for School Assignments

Internet speed is a major factor in determining where kids connect to the Internet to complete assignments. Seven in 10 teenagers who have slower dial-up access at home prefer to log on to a faster Internet connection at school, while the majority of teens who have high-speed access at home prefer to do their schoolwork from there.

Additionally, students with high-speed Internet access are more likely to:

— Download pictures or illustrations for schoolwork. Nearly 65 percent of preteens with high-speed access download pictures or illustrations for a report or project compared with just over 45 percent of preteens with dial-up access.

— Watch video clips or listen to audio clips. Among teenagers who have high-speed access, 70 percent are more likely to watch a video clip or listen to an audio clip for help with a school assignment, and just over 40 percent of teens with dial-up access will do so.

— Spend more time online. Among children with high-speed access, 55 percent spend three hours or more using the Internet during an average week; just under 40 percent who have dial-up access spend that much time online.

“High-speed Internet access is clearly a critical element of students’ education, enabling children to learn and do more online,” said Tyler Wallis, executive director, SBC marketing. “Broadband has become the modern-day textbook, and services like SBC Yahoo! DSL are helping students get what they need, when they need it, to be successful in school.”

Students’ Internet Habits Through the Years

As children grow older, they spend more time on the Internet. More than 30 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds spend three or more hours online during an average week. As they become teenagers, more than half spend three or more hours online. Children’s Internet habits also change as they get older. Differences include:

6- to 11-year-olds:

— More than 80 percent play games or do other fun things while online.

— More than 70 percent look for information to help with homework or school projects.

— 65 percent use the Internet to help with reading, science, arithmetic or other subjects.

12- to 17-year-olds:

— More than 90 percent use the Internet to find information to help with school assignments.

— More than 80 percent look for better information compared with what they find in school books.

— Nearly 65 percent keep up with current events.

Teachers Get High Marks for Internet Help and Usage

The survey shows that almost 85 percent of preteens and more than 60 percent of teens think that their teachers do a good to excellent job helping them learn and use the Internet. In addition, almost 90 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds are satisfied with their teacher’s Internet knowledge. About seven in 10 students surveyed believe that their teachers give them enough time to spend on the Internet at school.

However, when it comes to who knows most about using the Internet, attitudes shift as children grow older. Young children see their parents or teachers as the experts on the Internet; teenagers view them and their peers as being more knowledgeable. Nearly 90 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds give high marks to their teachers, parents and other relatives for their Internet knowledge, while nearly 55 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds believe that they or their friends know more about the Internet.

The survey was conducted on behalf of SBC Communications Inc. by Opinion Research Corporation’s Pre-Teen Caravan and Teen Caravan omnibus surveys, which interviewed a nationwide sample of 1,002 respondents, 6- to 17-years-old (501 preteens between the ages of 6 and 11 and 501 teens, 12- to 17-year-olds). The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.

SBC Communications Inc. is a Fortune 50 company whose subsidiaries, operating under the SBC brand, provide a full range of voice, data, networking, e-business, directory publishing and advertising, and related services to businesses, consumers and other telecommunications providers. SBC holds a 60 percent ownership interest in Cingular Wireless, which serves 25 million wireless customers. SBC companies provide high-speed DSL Internet access lines to more American consumers than any other provider and are among the nation’s leading providers of Internet services. SBC companies also now offer satellite TV service. Additional information about SBC and SBC products and services is available at http://www.sbc.com.

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CONTACT:

SBC Communications Inc.

Natalie Carlson

210-352-6966, ncarlson@sbcnews.us

National Survey Finds Kids Give High Marks to High Speed; Internet Considered Crucial for Educational Success