Technology Acceptance among American Indian Older Adults: The Role of Perceived Health, Social Engagement, and Social Support
Yeon-Shim Lee, ACSW, PhD; Soonhee Roh, LMSW, PhD; Steven R. Donahue, BA; Kyoung Hag Lee, MSW, PhD; Suk-hee Kim, MSW, PhD

Internet /Technology use has emerged as an effective source of health/mental health information; however, there is a paucity of research on technology acceptance among American Indian (AI) older adults. This study examined the role of perceived health, social engagement, and social support on technology acceptance using a sample of 227 AI older adults (mean age = 60.7) in South Dakota. A hierarchal regression model showed that older AIs with higher education and higher social support were more likely to accept technology use. Participation in social clubs or organizations was associated with higher technology acceptance, whereas frequency of phone contacts with a child was not a significant factor. Perceived health was not associated with technology acceptance. The findings highlight the importance of social engagement and social support in facilitating AI older adults’ learning and acceptance of technology. Future intervention efforts could be directed toward enhancing technology acceptance of AI older adults, particularly for those who are socially, geographically isolated and poorly educated. Greater attention to the ways in which AI older adults’ culture, needs, beliefs, and attitudes are implicated in health promoting behaviours and practice could help with designing culturally appropriate Internet-and mobile-based health/mental health interventions for this population.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jssw.v5n2a4