The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Monday, January 9, 2017

U.K. Detox Camps Help Teens Unplug

After touring secondary schools and surveying students ages 13-18, the founder of a British “digital detox” company said she’ll expand its services this spring to include teenagers.

Tanya Goodin of Time To Log Off found that 29% of the young people she polled said they spend more than eight hours a day online, and more than a third regularly fall asleep at night with their phone or laptop in bed with them.

In the U.S., in response to a December 2016 survey of more than 4,500 college students by NACS’ OnCampus Research, a quarter said they spend two hours every day on social media, 19% said three hours, 14% said four hours, and 9% said five hours. Three percent admitted actually devoting 10 hours every day to social media.

Unlike Internet-addiction treatment centers in China, which are run more like army boot camps, Time To Log Off’s three-day teen retreats in Britain will emphasize team-building and creative activities such as painting, cooking, and photography.

Richard Graham, a London psychiatrist, told The Guardian newspaper that schools should be looking into running their own digital-detox programs, especially close to midterm and final exams. He said what’s needed is a “systemwide approach, with clean times and clean zones where everyone switches off.”

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