Laptop policies are different in all courses but a lot of professors ban laptop usage in class.

I’m allowed to use my laptop in three out of my four classes. The professor of my fourth class is a firm believer of no devices, only permitting their usage during workshops.

Many professors believe that laptops are distracting and don’t allow students to fully engage with the material. In my experience, laptops also make it less likely that students might participate in class discussions. Conversely, some students think that laptops have the opposite effect. They believe laptops allow for quicker note taking, letting them search unfamiliar terms and create more organized forms of notes. In some ways, students can absorb more through a laptop than the conventional pen and paper.

In some ways, students can absorb more through a laptop than the conventional pen and paper.

There has been a growth of evidence that back up professors’ arguments for banning laptops. This distraction isn’t only a problem for the students on their laptops, but it can also affect the surrounding students. They can also be distracting for the professor, as their students are not looking up at them.

In a sequence of experiments at Princeton University and the University of California, Los Angeles, students were randomly assigned to either take notes with a pen and paper or a laptop. The study showed that those who used laptops had considerably worse comprehension of the class material compared to those who used the old-school method of pen and paper.

While it is evident from studies that college students learn less and get worse grades when they use electronic devices in class, I find this research problematic because no one student is the same and you can’t just assume all students would be affected by laptops like the ones in the study.

There may be one student who is dedicated to their academics and uses their laptop solely to have organized notes. Other students may use their laptop to watch baseball games during class or look through social media. If laptops are a valuable tool to some students, why should they have the privilege taken away just because of the students who are distracted by them?

Most college students are above the age of 18, which means that they are adults and are legally permitted to vote, play the lottery, buy reworks and buy cigarettes. So why can’t students have the choice to have their laptops in class? It’s the students’ responsibility to take ownership of their actions by recognizing that they are accountable for their academic success.

I can see how this can be frustrating on both parties. Since I am student with a learning disability, having a laptop in class is crucial for me at times. It helps me take accurate notes with correct spelling. When taking notes with pen and paper, my notes are filled with spelling errors and that makes me feel unorganized.

I don’t think professors should ban laptops completely. I think there should be a compromise between having them in class and removing the distraction. For example, if there is an open discussion the professor could ask the students to close the laptops. On the other hand, I think devices should be allowed if the professor is giving a lecture.

Overall I think there should be room in between allowing all access to the devices in class and turning them all o to reduce distraction. I believe there are different approaches professors can take instead of immediately having a no laptop policy.


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