It’s a pretty common occurrence to walk into a lecture hall in a university and see hundreds of students gathered for their classes, most of whom have their laptops out to take notes as the professor covers his or her material for the day. While students should have their laptops in class to be able to take notes, it is clear that often times a lot more is happening on the computers of students in class than just that. The sounds of the professor lecturing are matched with the clicking of keys while students type away to update their Facebook statuses and Twitter feeds, prompting many professors to take these matters into their own hands.
Some students in class are doing everything else but taking good notes, and their distractions are really starting to bother professors at many schools and universities. In fact, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), professors are looking into nipping this issue in the bud, according to an article posted on Boston.com. With many students using this time to check social media sites, comb shopping sites, and even trade stocks or play games, it is clear that students are not focused on their work and are not taking notes. As professors lecture and ask questions to ensure students are listening, it is likely that the same ambitious bunch answer the questions, while other students pretend to listen and not really contribute anything to the lecture or discussion.
With professors competing with social media and sites such as Youtube and PerezHilton, these sites are coming in between them and teaching their students, and the problem seems like it will only get worse. Even perhaps more upsetting than students not paying attention in class is the fact that they can get all the information and material later anyway. Students that do not pay attention in class and have no idea what is going on don’t seem too worried about learning about the material covered in class because chances are they can Google it later and find out everything they need to know. It’s also likely that they can bum someone else’s notes or find information anywhere on the web.
Many agree that the foundation to a good education requires an active exchange between professors and students on a regular basis, but it would be difficult to entirely disconnect students from being able to browse the Internet while at school. Many schools still trying to keep up with the times and offer their students the ability to connect to W-Fi while on campus, but now some school officials are arguing that that may not be in the best interest of everyone involved.
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