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Why Students Should Not Be Allowed to Use Their Cellphones in Class? Essay

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Updated: Jun 18th, 2021

Introduction

The job of a teacher is both highly rewarding and demanding. Educators need to dedicate their efforts, knowledge, time, and passion to their work in order to do it in a truly productive way and reach the most positive outcomes. However, this profession is also quite stressful: students may be ill-disciplined and inattentive, which leads to distractions during classes. Ironic as it is, the greatest of such diversions occur due to technological development.

Cellphones, which were devised to offer people more mobility and convenience, have become the nightmare of professors because their students are constantly distracted during lectures and seminars. Even though one may receive an important message occasionally, it seems that the use of cell phones should be forbidden during classes.

Main body

The major reason why mobile phones should not be allowed in class is that they distract students from their primary goal and duty: obtaining an education. According to research, young people check their mobiles every 15-20 minutes (Kamenetz). Taking into account the average duration of a class, it is possible to conclude that each learner gets distracted at least 3-4 times. Consequently, much significant information is missed out, leading to further misunderstanding of the topic or even the whole subject.

Thus, students should not use their cell phones in order to increase their learning abilities and enhance their understanding of the issues learned. Scholarly research indicates that the heavy use of smartphones is directly related to lower-quality sleep and lower GPAs (Kamenetz). Since the purpose of education is to make young people smarter and more knowledgeable, it is obvious that cellphones constitute a serious obstacle in the way to gaining knowledge and learning valuable information. Some subjects may be easier to catch up with, but there are complicated studies that require full-time attention and presence.

Thus, it is necessary to limit the number of times students should be allowed to use their devices at schools, colleges, and universities. It is crucial to create the most comfortable conditions for learners, but they frequently abuse the right to convenience. Every student should realize that personal life should not affect educational achievements. Moreover, it is quite often that students do not solve any serious problems with their family or other close ones, merely browsing social websites or checking the news. Therefore, the limited use of cell phones during classes would be beneficial for learners: they would spend all their time concentrating on the new material rather than diverting their attention from important issues.

Another problem associated with the use of cell phones in classes is that professors cannot reach the highest outcomes of their work. There are many types of classes, as well as various kinds of student work, each of which demands proper attention and dedication on the part of not only the teacher but also students. Educators whose students constantly get distracted feel stressed out and do not consider themselves content with their work. According to the study performed by professors at the University of Colorado Boulder, over three-fourths of undergraduate students admit texting during classes (Kamenetz).

Furthermore, such in-class texting is connected with the average drop of “half a letter grade” in a course (Kamenetz). It is viable to note that professors suffer not only from students’ disrespectful behavior towards them but also from learners’ poor achievements. Therefore, the second reason why cell phones should be banned during classes is closely associated with the first one, but it is more teacher-centered. Poor results prevent learners from participating in group or class activities effectively. For instance, a student that missed some important information because of using a smartphone during a lecture will not be able to contribute to a project as well as his or her peers who were attentive.

Since teachers’ job is giving knowledge to students, the former become upset when the latter pays little or no attention to them. Thus, professors try to come up with solutions to the problem of using cell phones in classes. One of the proposed approaches, made by Doug Duncan, is offering a participation point for turning off a mobile phone and leaving it on the professor’s desk during the class (Kamenetz). Thus, it is possible to find creative solutions for the problem, and some professors already work in this direction.

At the same time, there are scholars that disapprove of taking cell phones away from students. A research psychologist at California State University, Larry Rosen, notes that “simply incentivizing” learners to turn off their phones is not a good idea (Kamenetz). Rosen remarks that taking away the phone does not reduce the level of distraction. Students keep thinking about all the messages and notifications they are probably missing, which leads to stress and anxiety.

To prove his point, Rosen performed some experiments which indicated that students’ heart rate and other vital signs increased when they heard their mobiles ring but were not able to answer them (Kamenetz). Thus, Rosen argues that keeping cellphones in learner’s sight but out of their reach intensifies anxiety, which leads to distraction. Instead, the researcher suggests making “tech breaks” at measured intervals to allow students check on their devices and reduce anxiety (Kamenetz).

Rosen suggests starting with a fifteen-minute interval and gradually moving to a thirty-minute period without students looking at their cellphones. Although this idea sounds good, it seems that the overwhelming problem of smartphone dependence has reached too serious a point. It seems that strict measures are necessary not only for reducing students’ distraction levels but also for teaching them not to be so attached to their mobiles.

People that abuse the use of applications and social media tend to be less concentrated in all spheres of life: in the shops, while driving a car, or even when communicating with their children. Therefore, helping individuals to cope with their dependence at a student age can promote their better understanding of real values in the future. Thus, the suggestion made by Duncan is more helpful than the one made by Rosen.

Conclusion

While a student may occasionally receive an important message during a class, the majority of cases when learners check their cellphones are associated only with checking updates and browsing social websites. Therefore, students should not be allowed to use these gadgets during their classes. Getting distracted leads to poor academic results and can prevent one from finding a good job in the future.

Moreover, since research indicates that the level of anxiety increases when a cellphone is taken away for a short time, it is crucial to train students to be less dependent on their devices. Thus, finding solutions to this problem is a better idea than keeping learners use their phones only because they feel bad without them.

Work Cited

Kamenetz, Ania. “National Public Radio. 2015. Web.

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"Why Students Should Not Be Allowed to Use Their Cellphones in Class?" IvyPanda, 18 June 2021, ivypanda.com/essays/why-students-should-not-be-allowed-to-use-their-cellphones-in-class/.

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IvyPanda. "Why Students Should Not Be Allowed to Use Their Cellphones in Class?" June 18, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/why-students-should-not-be-allowed-to-use-their-cellphones-in-class/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Why Students Should Not Be Allowed to Use Their Cellphones in Class?" June 18, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/why-students-should-not-be-allowed-to-use-their-cellphones-in-class/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'Why Students Should Not Be Allowed to Use Their Cellphones in Class'. 18 June.

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