Should you ditch your mobile phone for school?Posted: 18th of May 2015 by
A recent study published by the London School of Economics found that test results improved significantly in schools where mobile phones were banned.
90% + of students own a mobile phone and according to reports, having them at schools causes all sorts of problems, from increased bullying and theft to cheating in exams.
One major problem often reported is that mobile phones are having a negative impact on teaching and learning, with teachers having to spend much of their time dealing with students who are texting or using social media in class(not to mention students complaining of teachers texting in class). As a result of this disruption to learning the success rates of students is impacted negatively.
One answer often given is ‘it’s just there on my desk; I’m not using it’ – well, a different study, published in the Journal of Social Psychology suggests that merely having your phone there is a distraction – always reminding you of the wider social life that exists beyond where you are (in the classroom) – So, should you ditch your mobile phone for school?
Some argue, no because mobile phones, at least of the modern ‘smart’ kind are useful tools; you can access the internet to research, access dictionaries for spelling or access translator tools if your second language is English. Would an outright ban be unfair to some students then?
Maybe it’s time to start encouraging students to act responsibly (assuming that not all do already)? Would we need a ban on mobile phones if students understood the benefits of not misusing these in class? Who knows? Maybe that’s a little idealistic; but at the end of the day, if you want to learn no one will stop you and if you are hell-bent on not learning then anything will!
So, I guess the message is – decide for yourself; if you want to learn then don’t misuse your mobile phone in class or leave it at home and if you don’t want to learn, ask yourself whether you don’t want anyone else to either…mobile phones distract more than the user you know.
On a related note - you may be interested in why picking up a pen will improve your learning
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