Learning to live with both internal and external distractions is all about teaching the concept of focus, Rosen writes.
A recent Pew Internet amp; American Life Project report surveyed 2,462 middle and high school Advanced Placement and national writing project teachers and concluded that: “Overwhelming majorities agree with the assertions that today’s digital technologies are creating an easily distracted generation with short attention spans, and today’s students are too ‘plugged in’ and need more time away from their digital technologies.”
Two-thirds of the respondents agree with the notion that today’s digital technologies do more to distract students than to help them academically.
Mind you, we are talking about teachers who typically teach the best and brightest students and not those who we would generally think of as highly distractible.
Recently my research team observed 263 middle school, high school, and university students studying for a mere 15 minutes in their homes. We were interested in whether students could maintain focus and, if not, what might be distracting them. Every minute we noted exactly what they were doing, whether they were studying, if they were texting or listening to music or watching television in the background, and if they had a computer screen in front of them and what websites were being visited.
The results were startling, considering that the students knew we were watching them and most likely assumed we were observing how well they were able to study. First, these students were only able to stay on task for an average of three to five minutes before losing their focus. Universally, their distractions came from technology, including: (1) having more devices available in their studying environment such as iPods, laptops, and smart phones; (2) texting; and (3) accessing Facebook...
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Driven to distraction: How to help wired students learn to focus
This from eCampusNews: