Arguments against the Use of Devices for Note Taking in Class
The advancements in technology contribute to the simplification of day-to-day activities for individuals. Devices that deliver more services than previously expected continue to flood the market. The education sector is not any different. The use of pens and paper in writing are becoming less basic as tools that every student and lecturer is required to have in a classroom. Instead, more individuals are leaning towards the use of electronic devices while participate in classroom activities. One of the key roles of using pens and papers in class is apparent in note taking. However, the face of note taking is changing fast. Nowadays, individuals are using devices to take notes in class in an attempt to ease or simplify the process (Boyd 13). Some of these devices include iPads, tape recorders, tablets and even mobile phones.
Though the intentions of using these devices are positive, major challenges remain. It is noted that the primary objective is to ease the note taking process as well as ensuring that students follow every step of learning (Boyd 13). Despite this, students are using devices to satisfy purposes other than study-related ones such as note taking. In this regard, devices are diversionary in nature. Hence, one aspects of failure of the technology is that it cannot be limited to note taking when used.
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Tablets, computers and iPads are devices that enable students to access information in class fast and accurately. Those devices have been introduced since they are useful in accessing useful content formatted as e-documents (“Research on In-Class Use of Laptops” 7-10). In addition, they allow students to do research on projects without having to pile up books and literature physically. Rather than email assignments to each other, students can use programs such as Dropbox to store files while facilitating access for every group member. The advantages attached to this include time saving and promotion of exploration, as students do not have to wander. Such allows classes to become interesting.
Despite the presence of many advantages associated with note taking devices, some negativity is discernable. Though the intentions are positive, students’ influence has the potential of diverting from the original purpose of these devices. As pointed previously, devices’ usage is not limited to learning or note taking. The position is held since students control devices. It is also noted that many of devices are electronic and they accommodate the use of the Internet. While they come with a note pad for note taking, they can also access the Internet. With all the available social sites, students divert to socializing rather than sticking to note taking (Zhu, Kaplan, Dershimer, and Bergom 30).
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The multi-tasking ability of devices is also disruptive in the learning process. Devices such as laptops allow students to open more than one window side-by-side. Hence, besides taking notes, students get entertained and keep track of a number of social sites. For this reason, students end up neglecting note taking in favor of other engagements (Boyd 15). One of the outcomes of such behavior is that students might end up taking incoherent notes. Even when multi-tasking, individuals tend to lean more towards topics of interest. Hence, the case for note taking using the mentioned devices is undermined.
It only takes a small deviation to disrupt an entire learning session (Glenn). Trying to key in every letter on a device can be hectic and frustrating, especially when trying to keep pace with a lecturer. Students who fall behind encounter difficulties remain when they attempt to recover from such drawbacks. This is because students need to maintain a given flow to understand class notes.
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Devices used in note taking are costly. The prices of devices are excessively high although books and pens also come at a cost. Despite their advantages, not every student is able to afford them. This deprives most of the students comfort in classrooms. Feeling left out directly affects performance in class for students (Boyd 20). Unless schools are willing to provide every student with devices, the expectation is that they will cause more harm than good. Such issue raises technical and behavioral challenges for most students.
Every class session runs for a given time. It is better to use a pen and paper since they do not require additional complimentary tools. Devices that run on power are risky since problems with power supply present challenges. It is also impossible to fill a room with power sockets to meet every student’s power needs. Some classes are so large since hundreds of students occupy them. Using devices would result in more than half of the number of students being unable to complete their notes.
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Some devices are more powerful than others are in terms of their features and specifications. Such aspect allows different students to either keep up with lectures or lag behind. While every student finds it easy to use these devices, regularizing their usage is a challenging affair. Since each device present its challenges, lecturers trying to meet every students needs might encounter difficulties.
Use of devices in classrooms for note taking comes with both advantages and disadvantages. Looking at the pros and cons, it suffices that it is better to use devices than to stick to the traditional way of taking notes. However, very few students use devices for the intended purpose. Advancement in technology is also beneficial although some individuals tend to misuse it. In order to enhance the use of devices for note taking, students should discipline themselves by adhering to apply devices as intended.