Creating supportive environments and enhancing personal perception to bridge the digital divide among older adults

Sangyoon Han, Seok In Nam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The active use of digital technology by older adults will directly promote active and healthy aging, which will have a positive effect not only on the older adults themselves but also on society in general, which is rapidly aging. But Age-based digital divide has become the new face of inequality for older adults around the world. This study aimed to explore the digital technology acceptance process and identify barriers to use among older adults, using the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) 3 as a framework. This study used data from the 2018 Digital Divide Survey of the Ministry of Science and ICT in South Korea. The sample consisted of 1,662 older adults (aged 55+). The major findings of the study indicate that two environmental dimensions–personal perception (technology self-efficacy and perceived value) and social environment (social norms and social support)–significantly impact the intention to use digital technology among older adults. Furthermore, perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use mediate the relationship between personal and social dimensions and intention. The implications of this study on digital inclusion in older adults can be summarized as follows: it is essential to prioritize the delivery of appropriate digital training and built supportive environments from gerontological perspectives, not just to improve digital accessibility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-352
Number of pages14
JournalEducational Gerontology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea [NRF-2020M3C1B6113681].

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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