Sunday, November 19, 2017

Strict Technology Policies Are Beneficial to Education

JAYMIE BIANCA ’21

STAFF WRITER

As soon as the clock says 10:00 am in my math class, my professor immediately exclaims that all cell phones, tablets, laptops, and communication devices are to be turned off and put away. Some students quickly oblige. However, some groan or refuse to abide by the professors’ rules.

While this specific professor’s policy may seem unfair, I personally believe it is beneficial. For me personally, math can be quite a struggle. Not being distracted by my phone has been very helpful. When my phone is off, I am always attentive, have every note the professor writes on the chalkboard in my notebook, and never miss any announcements pertaining to homework and quizzes. My attentiveness will hopefully reflect on a better overall grade in the course, and I have had nothing but positive experiences with this professor’s policy.

However, in another class I’m in, there is no clear policy regarding technology. Therefore, I see students on their phones constantly, not paying attention to the task at hand. I see that this is as frustrating for the professor, since students often ask questions that the professor has already addressed. It wastes class time and prevents the professor from moving on to a different subject. Also, students usually miss updates concerning homework and quizzes. This will certainly negatively impact their grade on a homework or test and reflect poorly on their overall grade. While not having a strict technology policy in place may teach students about taking responsibility for their own actions, it is detrimental to their education and grades. College students are still young, and while I am not advocating for college attendees to be coddled, I believe that a helpful tip and reminder to keep our devices off and away is perfectly acceptable.

Enforcing stricter technological policies create a more engaged classroom audience. It is so easy to slip away into the world of technology, which is not conducive to learning material in class. It may be frustrating, and it may seem as if students are not being treated as adults when asked to out their phones away, but students need to realize that this only benefits them. There is plenty of time to check phones later on in the day. The classroom should be a place of learning, not a room full of unengaged young adults staring at their cell phones.

However, there may be necessary exceptions. For one class, my professor explicitly told us to take our laptops out to look at data gathered in Hartford. In this instance, technology was being used to engage us in our class by learning about data gathered in our community. This is one of the few times technology was beneficial in the classroom. While I do believe stricter technology policies must be enforced, I think that there are cases where technology may be used in the classroom. As long as certain devices are being used to better the students minds and further help them in their tasks, then technology is not a problem in this instance. But if students are scrolling through Twitter or texting their friends, then technology is not aiding the maturation of a student’s brain.

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