Our View: Utilizing technology for good
Published: Friday, September 6, 2013
Updated: Friday, September 6, 2013 14:09
There is no doubt that texting while driving is dangerous, texting during a date is childish and texting during church can be considered sinful.
When it comes to texting in the classroom, ASU professors consistently choose a no tolerance policy. The no texting policy is for a good reason; just like texting while driving it’s distracting, like texting on a date it sends the wrong message and like texting in church it’s disrespectful.
Statistics from the University of Pittsburgh quantify texting, reporting on average students send 2.4 texts and read 2.6 texts during class. Students who text more during class tend to score lower on tests compared to their more consciencious classmates.
The question becomes what to do about cellphones and other potentially distracting technology in the classroom. Some teachers recommend an even stricter approach, forcing students to turn their technology off, potentially put them in a community basket or to simply leave them at home.
ASU as an institution has chosen to ignore the negative results of technology distractions. In fact, ASU not only allows technology in the classroom but enforces freshman use iPads in their classes.
On face this may seem like a disastrous problem waiting to implode on students’ grades. This, however, may be the perfect counter force to encourage students to become self-disciplined with technology while simultaneously allowing them to learn the skills needed for the ever-changing job markets.
There is no doubt that students will need to have the ability to access technology and gather information quickly. Many jobs in the future are likely to require workers to have the ability to develop skills and gain knowledge instantaneously.
And since it is nearly impossible to stop students from using technology in the classroom, it would be adventageous to incorporate iPads, cellphones and other technology into classroom learning.
Teachers who embrace this wave of thinking encourage students to embrace technology for learning that would otherwise be a distraction. Some teachers ask students to Google definitions, others have students bring up the syllabi or access discussion boards.
This just may be the forward thinking that’s needed to set students from ASU apart from other graduates. Graduates will have learned to utilize technology but also understand self restraint.
Texting may still be frowned upon, but allowing students to utilize technology for good habits may be better for students in the long run and save teachers from pulling out their hair over disruptive and distracting text messages.