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Orig. title: KIM-Studie 2014: Basisuntersuchung zum Medienumgang 6- bis 13-Jähriger in Deutschland

Engl. transl.: KIM 2014: Study of the media use of 6- to 13-year-olds in Germany


Kids Children Media Internet Media use Digitalization Learning

Publication details

Year: 2015
Issued: 2015
Language: German
Authors: Medienpädagogischer Forschungsverbund Südwest
Type: Report and working paper
Publisher: Medienpädagogischer Forschungsverbund
Place: Stuttgart
Topics: Internet usage, practices and engagement; Learning; Literacy and skills
Sample: For the 2014 KIM study, a total of 1,209 German-speaking schoolchildren between the ages of six and 13 were interviewed personally and verbally (CAPI) at home between May 9, 2014 and June 20, 2014. In parallel to the questioning of the children, the interviews with the primary educators were carried out with a self-filling questionnaire (paper & pencil). The selection process was based on a quota procedure. The sample points were stratified according to federal state and type of municipality (BIK location size classes) and randomly selected. Within the sample points, the respondents were selected on the basis of quota specifications with the characteristics gender x age, gender x age x federal state and type of municipality (BIK) x federal state according to the currently available data from the Federal Statistical Office. The results are therefore representative for the six to 13 year olds in Germany. The field work and data checking was carried out by the IFAK Institute Taunusstein. (KIM Study, p. 4)


The spread of tablet PCs has increased by leaps and bounds in recent years, and the use of the devices by children is often discussed due to the intuitive user interface. According to the results of the current KIM study, however, using a tablet is only an option for a minority of German children: 19 percent of households with children between the ages of six and 13 have a tablet PC (2012: 12%), only two Percent of children in this age group own a tablet themselves (2012: 1%). If you only look at those children who have a tablet available at home, half use the device regularly for games, a good one in three looks at photos or videos on it or surfs the Internet. A total of 63 percent of six to 13-year-olds use the Internet at least rarely; this proportion has only increased marginally by one percentage point since the last survey by the KIM study in 2012. However, the frequency of use has increased: If children are users of the Internet, 40 percent surf the Internet every or almost every day (2012: 36%, 2010: 26%), 44 percent are online once or several times a week and 16 percent are sporadic users (less than once a week). While girls and boys show practically no differences in their daily use, the younger ones are represented to a significantly lower proportion (6-7 years: 15%, 8-9 years: 18%, 10-11 years: 38%, 12 -13 years: 60%). When it comes to access devices, computers and laptops continue to be by far in first place among children; nine out of ten Internet users between the ages of six and 13 regularly use the Internet on a PC or laptop. Only a third of the children who at least rarely use the Internet regularly go online with their cell phone / smartphone. Game consoles come in third place (11%); access via tablet PCs is only relevant for a minority of Internet users (5%). Despite the growing importance of the Internet, television is the most important medium for children between the ages of six and 13. 61 percent choose television as the medium they can least do without. Only a quarter of the children opt for computers and the Internet. And television is also the front runner in terms of daily use: 79 percent of children watch television every day, and only one in four uses the Internet every or almost every day. (Source:


Almost every second six to 13-year-old owns a mobile phone (47%). One third of children (35%) are owners of a TV. Only every fifth child (21%) has its own computer or laptop, 18 per cent have Internet access from their room. In comparison to the previous survey in 2012, a decreasing tendency is visible for most devices. A clear increase can be seen in the prevalence of smartphones, which now lies at 25 per cent. (KIM Study, p. 74) Watching TV has the highest medial bonding force in the age group of six to 13-year-olds – 61 per cent of children are least willing to give up TV. Nearly four fifths of children watch TV every day, another 18 per cent one or more times a week. Watching TV is an activity with high everyday application and has a lot to do with habit. Half of the children state that they turn on the TV whenever a particular show is running, the other half simply turns on the TV and lets the range of offerings “surprise” them. 80 per cent of the children that watch TV have a favourite TV show. “KiKA” is the children’s most favoured TV channel, followed by “Super RTL”. (KIM Study, p.74-75) Regardless of personal property or household amenities, 76 per cent of children at least infrequently use a computer/laptop. 37 per cent of computer users deal with a computer or laptop on a daily or nearly daily basis, 48 per cent one to several times a week. The use of computers in academic contexts still only takes place highly selectively and is less interdisciplinary. Only 30 per cent of children at least infrequently use computers at school. (KIM Study, p.75) The results of the KIM Study 2014 show that for younger children, TV clearly dominates media usage, while computer and Internet apart from games still do not have a high relevance in everyday life. Beginning at about ten years, the repertoire of media is expanded to include communicative aspects and the media Internet and mobile phones become integrated into the daily life of children. The topic of computers is so far only partly present in schools. Only two fifths of children who use computers indicate also using computers at school. Furthermore, the statements on technical competencies show that only a majority of children from age 12 upward are able to accomplish basic functions at the computer well. In view of this fact, the discussion on implementing tablets at primary school is far ahead of the current situation. With household equipment at one fifth, tablet PCs are currently not yet relevant for most children; returning home, the children would again have to work at a traditional PC. To what extent the devices of students could be integrated into the school routine (keyword BYOD, bring your own device) is therefore currently not a question, since the devices are not present. For primary school, this currently also applies to smartphones. Prior to technical equipment ranks the aspect of what contents should be firmly established in order to provide all children with comparable prerequisites for exploiting full potential of digital media. (KIM Study, p. 77)

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