At this point in American culture, one cannot seem to go a day without interacting with some form of technology. Whether it be a cellphone, a laptop or a projector in a classroom, students constantly find themselves in the presence of technology.
According to the Pew Research Center in February 2019, 81 percent of Americans own a smartphone.
Technology also has a huge presence in educational environments, such as on college campuses like California Baptist University.
Levi DeForrest, an Information Technology Services student worker, said, “Computers and smartphones are tied for being the most important devices for a student. Computers are used to write essays and complete assignments. Nowadays, smartphones can do those things, too, as well as provide a messaging feature for classmates.”
Facebook Messenger and GroupMe are among the many resources that students can use to exchange information regarding academics.
Robbie Pendleton, freshman graphic design major, described the experience of being involved in a major that relies heavily on technology.
“It definitely takes a balance because I conduct my schoolwork on the same device that I use for entertainment. I have to set aside time to complete my work and create an environment that silences the outside distractions,” Pendleton said.
Students often use the same devices to complete educational tasks, projects and entertainment. According to a press release from Nielsen Holdings, the average adult in the United States spends roughly 11 hours a day interacting with media. This encompasses computer time, smartphone usage, watch time on various streaming platforms and any other interactions with digital media.
Fredrica Williams, sophomore psychology major, expressed what measures she has to take to make sure she can stay productive.
“I have to place my phone somewhere out of plain sight so I can better focus on my work. I also like to go on walks outside when I catch myself browsing the internet too much instead of working on classes,” Williams said.
While technology provides distractions, it also contains resources that enhance the learning experience. Pendleton said he enjoys using Adobe Creative Suite.
“To be able to use apps like Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop and other applications is important because they are tools that I will be using in my trade,” Pendleton said.
If used correctly, technology can be a huge asset to students.
“Technological devices should be viewed as tools and resources,” Deforrest said.
Technology will constantly be evolving, and students today and in the future will continue learning to use new tools to enhance their learning.