If you are a tech-freak and loves to take classroom lectures or meeting notes on your laptop or tablet or some high tech advanced smartphone then hold-on you need to change this practice and soon. There is an increasing proof that using laptops or tech gadgets for taking notes during lectures decreases the learning capability, resulting in lower academic grades and hence poor performance as per the reports of the New York Times.
The study was conducted by the researchers at the University of California and Princeton University by dividing students in a group of two—one group was asked to take lectures using pen and paper while the other group of students was told to takes notes using laptops. The research findings were that the students using laptops during lectures were not able to understand the lecture that well in comparison to those taking lectures with pen on paper.
Ungated versions of articles cited in my NYT column on laptops in lectures 1/3
— Prof Dynarski (@dynarski) November 26, 2017
The researchers assumed that the difference emerged because the students who take lectures using hands had to process the information flow before noting it on the paper in order, to keep up with the lecture by summarizing the contents of the lecture. Additionally, it was also noted that the students taking lectures using laptops were possibly unable to process the content in their own words thus preventing them from truly comprehending the lecture.
Another study was conducted at McMaster University and York University—tested students were asked to search for stuff not related to the lecture, this activity resulted in causing these students to remember less of the original lecture and also affected the students sitting near them.
Lastly, a study from the United States Military Academy revealed that the students significantly performed well who had no access to any gadgets in comparison to those who had access. The study was done on the students of economics class based on the usage of gadgets during lectures, their restriction and not allowed at all.
Writing things is becoming old-fashioned and less common as people are more drifted towards the use of gadgets and speech recognition software. It should be noted that writing with hand improves memory, creativity and motor skills. So even though using laptops and tablets for lecture taking or notes may seem trendy and fast, yet one must think that how much information one is retaining using these tech-devices.