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I Think I Can; I Think I Can

Filed under: Uncategorized — mfoley397 at 11:50 pm on Friday, October 19, 2012  Tagged

My students think they can multitask in most situations. They prefer to write essays while listening to music, playing an occasional video game, and texting their friends. They are not allowed to do many of the aforementioned activities while writing essays in my class due to school policies as well as class rules. Wouldn’t it be nice to convince them with data instead of rhetoric that multitasking will be detrimental to their grades? That there is scientific data to prove that they are wrong about their super powers .

The blog “Students Think They Can Multitask. Here’s Proof They Can’t.” by , gives statistical evidence to prove that students aren’t as good at multitasking as they think they are. She asserts that by giving students the hard, cold facts, they will come to the natural conclusion that perhaps multitasking will have a negative effect on their grades. I’m not convinced that this would work with my highschoolers. I think I would have to go one step further and perform an experiment similar to one of the case studies. I find that most high school age students ,” Don’t think it will happen to them”-  that it may happen to other kids, but not them. Performing a tangible experiment that includes themselves in the data might be an effective way to persuade students to avoid multitasking.

1 Comment »


   Mary Ann Foncello

October 20, 2012 @ 6:57 pm   Reply

In spite of what some students might claim, the experiments conducted demonstrate that multitasking does not result in higher quality work or the saving of time. Your suggestion of conducting a controlled experiment with your own students is a concrete way for the students to discover how multitasking is impacting them. As the Chinese proverb says,”I hear and I forget. I see, and I remember. I do, and I understand.”

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