Research + News | Topic: Technology

The Case Against Laptops in the Classroom

Some teachers and professors are rethinking allowing laptops and other electronics in the classroom. Read the article here.

Searching the Web in Class is a Bad Idea

surfingtheweA study by Michigan State University scholars, funded by the National Science Foundation, found that “even the smartest college students suffer academically when they use the Internet in class for non-academic purposes.”

From the report:

“All students, regardless of intellectual ability, had lower exam scores the more they used the Internet for non-academic purposes such as reading the news, sending emails and posting Facebook updates…

The study also showed students discounted the effects of Internet use on academic performance, reinforcing past findings that students have poor awareness of how their smartphones and laptops affect learning.”

Read the full report here.

Trends Redefining Information Age

BU-102213-articleBarna Group report uncovers 3 trends that are redefining the information age.

1. People feel modern life is accelerating and becoming more complex.

2. People want to be culturally informed, but they are becoming accustomed to skimming content.

3. People are moving beyond mere facts and information, and are looking for holistic integration of faith and life.

David Kinnaman, president of Barna Group explains:

“There are two major forces going on here: Every year people have less time and every year they have more content being thrown at them. This is forcing them to develop the habit of skimming in response to information and content. We are becoming a nation of ‘info grazers.’ For content producers—whether publishers, writers, pastors, teachers, journalists, filmmakers and so on—this means the information age is becoming the distraction age. Consumers are easily distracted and overwhelmed by having to sift through the clutter every day. This feature of modern life is exponential with the rise of digitized information.”

Read the full report here.

How Technology is Changing Millennial Faith

millennialstechnologyBarna Group research explores the unique spiritual and technological trends among Millennials.

From the report:

“This digital world is the playground of Millennials, or those ages 18 to 29 in this current Barna study. Millennials certainly stand apart in their unsurpassed digital savvy. They’re also in a class of their own when it comes to faith experience and practice. Yet what happens when the unique spiritual characteristics and technological trends among Millennials collide?”

Read the full report here.

Tech Nudge: Proding Students Into and Through College

degreeAn article by Education Sector at American Institutes for Research explains the many ways that colleges use communication technology to “nudge” students through daily college activities and decisions. From the article:

“By giving students information-driven suggestions that lead to smarter actions, technology nudges are intended to tackle a range of problems surrounding the process by which students begin college and make their way to graduation… New approaches are certainly needed. Just 58 percent of full-time, first-time college students at four-year institutions complete a degree within six years. Among Hispanics, blacks, and students at two-year colleges, the figures are much worse. In all, more than 400,000 students drop out every year. At a time when post­secondary credentials are more important than ever, around 37 million Americans report their highest level of education as ‘some college, no degree.'”

Read the article here.

Download the full article (.pdf) here.

Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2017

The annual Beloit College Mindset list for the entering class of 2017 has been released. Now in its 15th year, it continues to reflect the world view of entering first year students. This year’s entering students in the class of 2017 were born in 1995. From the website:

“When the Class of 2017 arrives on campus this fall, these digital natives will already be well-connected to each other. They are more likely to have borrowed money for college than their Boomer parents were, and while their parents foresee four years of school, the students are pretty sure it will be longer than that. Members of this year’s first year class, most of them born in 1995, will search for the academic majors reported to lead to good-paying jobs, and most of them will take a few courses taught at a distant university by a professor they will never meet…”

Read the full list here.

Watch a video from the authors here.

Do Students Prefer Online or Face-to-Face Courses?

According to a study released by the Community College Research Center at Columbia University, “most students preferred to take only ‘easy’ academic subjects online; they preferred to take ‘difficult’ or ‘important’ subjects face-to-face.”

Read the press release here.

Download the full report (.pdf) here.

Teens Without Internet Are Educationally Disadvantaged

A new study by Oxford University’s department of education has shown that teenagers without web access are actually at a serious disadvantage educationally and socially.

Read the full report here.

Young Teens Use Mobile Devices for Homework

According to a recent poll by the research firm TRU more than a third of tweens and young teenagers in the United States said they are using smartphones to do homework. Smartphones were used at home for schoolwork by 39% of 11 to 14 year olds, 31% of those surveyed said they did assignments on a tablet while nearly 65% used laptops.

Read the full report from Reuters here.

Younger Americans’ Reading and Library Habits

The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project has taken a special look at readers between the ages of 16 and 29 because interest in them is especially high in the library world and the publishing world. This report examines how they encounter and consume books in different formats.

Main findings: 83% of Americans between the ages of 16 and 29 read a book in the past year; some 75% read a print book; 19% read an e-book; and 11%listened to an audiobook. Many say they are reading more in the era of digital content, especially on their mobile phones and on computers.

Read the report here.

Download the complete report (.pdf) here.