The latest study from the Educause Center for Analysis and Research (ECAR) found that while students bring plenty of Internet-capable devices to campus, few have the freedom to use them in class.
The ECAR Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology, 2013, reported that 58% of the students responding brought three or more devices to campus, but 74% said smartphone use was either discouraged or banned in the classroom and 30% said they were discouraged or banned from using their tablets. Just 3% of students were encouraged to use their smartphone and 15% to use their tablets.
The report found that students want to keep their academic and social lives separate and expect instructors to train them on using the technology required for coursework. They are ready to use their mobile devices for academics and are looking for encouragement from their instructors. Two-thirds reported that faculty use technology effectively in the classroom.
“It’s a little unclear what the students’ judgment is based on here: stuff not crashing? Faculty finding their comfort zone and sticking with it?” Jason B. Jones, director of educational technology, Trinity College, wrote in a blog post for The Chronicle of Higher Education. “Regardless, it is useful to know that students respect the faculty’s technology use.”