Glenn Beck might have thought twice about opening a new university had he known that students aren't studying as much as they used to.
Two economists have discovered just that. The Boston Globe reports:
According to time-use surveys analyzed by professors Philip Babcock, at the University of California Santa Barbara, and Mindy Marks, at the University of California Riverside, the average student at a four-year college in 1961 studied about 24 hours a week. Today's average student hits the books for just 14 hours.
Babcock and Marks found that this decrease in study might be attributed not to social networking, the internet and other technologies but a desire -- both on the part of students and professors -- to do the least amount of work possible. Universities attempt to combat this tendency by relying less on course evaluations when making decisions about tenure and requiring professors to administer explicit directions to students. That universities are often unaware of the scope of this particular problem, however, undermines their efforts. Many still hold that for every hour a student is in class, he or she should be studying for two.
Critics of the survey believe that regardless of university and SAT scores, it is impossible to compare 21st century students to their predecessors. After all, students today are not only more active on campus but also have more effective tools, like laptops, at their disposal.
Given these advancements, is it possible that students are working just as hard as ever? Weigh in below.
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