Whether class is one hour or three hours, the possibility of boredom for students is inevitable. Hearing the same voice, looking at the same slides or sitting in the same seat can cause classes to feel longer than they are and make it harder for students to absorb information.
In longer classes, students are allotted a short break to regain focus and boost energy. According to a new study by the Microsoft Corporation, most people lose concentration or interest after eight seconds.
For professors, this means the solution to recovering a student’s attention can be as simple as a snack.
Preston Magalhaes, junior anthropology and global community science double major, sees the importance of mental breaks during her longer classes.
“I’m in two, three-hour classes and we are usually given a break to get a snack or walk around,” Magalhaes said. “Breaks are needed because they help you regain focus, as well as digest the information you have learned.”
For Isabelle Alvarez, senior anthropology major, breaks are always appreciated. However, there are alternatives when necessary.
“Since my class is late in the afternoon, breaks are beneficial and most of us get coffee or food,” Alvarez said. “On days when we can’t fit in a break, it’s OK because we are having great discussions and covering a lot of interesting topics.”
Although some professors may not allow for breaks, group discussions or a 30-second stretch can refresh the brain and prove beneficial.