Professors allowing use of electronics in classroom for learning purposes

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Out with the old, in with the new.

With talks of textbooks being replaced by e-readers and the Web having about every possible piece of information available at the tips of one’s fingertips, many professors are now allowing students to utilize their computers in classrooms to assist in their learning.

Darrell Thompson, English instructor, said that he allows students to use computers to take notes in his class and finds that it is helpful for certain students who know how to stay focused on their classwork.

“It mostly depends on the student who has the availability and the option to use electronics when taking notes, it can benefit them if they have sloppy handwriting and are able to type fast enough,” Thompson said.

Although some students use their electronics for classwork purposes, many manage to get off topic and search the web.

“I roam around the classroom and have caught a few people on Facebook, but they’re only hurting themselves,” Thompson said.

Thompson adds that he may be taking a risk letting his students use their electronics during class time but they’re taking a risk too with their education.

“I still hand write notes if I’m at an event or lecture,” Thompson said. “It’s just what’s most comfortable for me.”

There are many students that still continue to traditionally hand write their notes versus trying to keep up with their professor verbally giving his lecture notes.

“I’m not a fast typer and I think that it works for people that can type their notes pretty quickly,” Lanie Shive, 19, child development major, said.

Shive believes that students should use their computers to take notes if they are able to keep up with the professor’s notes and are able to keep focus on their classwork.

“I prefer writing out my notes in a notebook because if I did use my computer I might want to look on other sites like Facebook and then I won’t pay attention so I don’t do it,” Shive said. “I think its only annoying if someone is sitting next to me looking at things that don’t have to do with class, its distracting.”

“It varies depending on the person and how they feel taking notes helps them,” Mary Phan, 19, computer science major said.”Some students learn better when they take notes by hand others learn better when they just hear the lecture.”

One benefit from using computers or iPads in class is the use of ebooks. For example “Making America” by Carol Berkin can be bought in a print version from the library as a new version for $187.35 or a used version for $140.55. According to Chegg.com the same book can be found as an ebook for $64.49 plus shipping and handling.

Using an ebook via tablet or computer can potentially save a student a lot of money but it just depends on how the student uses the tablet and computer.

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