How Has Technology Changed How College Students Learn?
If you have college-educated parents, then you’ve probably heard all kinds of stories about how they had to write their papers on typewriters and start all over every time they made a typo. You’ve probably also considered what it must have been like to go to the library for all of your research, not just because it was a quiet place to study. The truth of the matter is that technology is constantly changing the way that college students learn and perform, which means there are many reasons to count your lucky stars. Here is how technology has changed the way that college students learn.
Research Will Never be the Same
Obviously, the Internet changed the way that college students do research forever. On the one hand, it is a lot easier to gain access to all kinds of sources for any subject that you need to research. Yet on the other, there is a much greater responsibility to verify the legitimacy of each one of your sources. There are much greater standards for the validity of information that can be published in college library books, versus the Internet as a whole. So a whole new skill of corroboration and authenticity is necessary in the 21st century.
Attention to Detail Has Been Reduced
With the advent of spelling and grammar checks on most word processors, most college students don’t pay very close attention as they construct their sentences anymore. After all, most misspelled words will be autocorrected before you’ve even noticed that you’ve made a mistake, and grammar mistakes are underlined and accompanied by improved suggestions, so students don’t even need to know what constitutes a passive voice or a fragmented sentence.
Studying Is Much Easier
Back in the day you only had the textbook from your course and your notes from lecture to use for study material. If you didn’t take proper notes, then you would likely be very confused when it came time for exams. However, today you have an endless supply of supplementary materials and videos that can be found online, and most teachers are starting to share their PowerPoint presentations on their class websites, making it so easy to focus your energy on annotating all the main points, rather than writing them all down yourself.
There is Less to Carry On Your Person
The digitization of information has allowed us to cut down significantly on the weight that we carry each day. Most of your reading materials can be stored digitally, you can take notes for every single one of your classes on the same tablet or lightweight laptop, and there is a plethora of phone applications that have replaced the need for most science and mathematical tools. The less you have to carry, the more likely you are to have everything you need on your person.
Difficult Concepts Can be Revisited Repeatedly
There are so many professors these days who record their lectures and post them online. This allows students to revisit the parts of the lecture that are more problematic as many times as they like. You’ll see this practice in almost every college, from the online schools to the major programs at Tufts University or even USC’s GIS degree. These forward-thinking institutions have found a way to combine technology and learning in a way that prioritizes success over perceived difficulty.