Pros of Laptops in College Classes

While critics of laptops in college classrooms still doubt the merits of integrating technology into education, computer technology is a part of life today and laptops are pervasive in most classrooms. Many colleges and school departments have made laptops a mandatory requirement for enrollment, citing increased grades and reduced reliance on paper, as well as a way of educating students on the technologies they will need when they finish their studies.

Better Notes and Retention

Colleges that have mandatory laptop policies often state that, according to their experience or studies, using a laptop in class improves overall efficiency and retention of information in students, resulting in better grades. While there are critics who believe that the temptation to multitask by going to social media websites and chatting with friends during class can erode retention rates and cause poor grades, those students who can focus on the lecture without those temptations perform better overall. Some campuses disable Wi-Fi® in classrooms so students can focus on the work at hand.

Reduced Reliance on Paper

When students use laptops in class, they can quickly make lecture notes directly on their computers, reducing the amount of paper being used. Instructors can make their own lecture notes available in electronic format, either in text notes or presentation slides. Increasingly, textbooks are becoming available in electronic format. When these are loaded onto a laptop, not only are massive amounts of paper saved, textbooks are only a click away for reference, regardless of where the student is sitting. When laptops are mandatory, tests and exams are often given electronically, rather than on paper.

Improved Technical Skills

Knowing how to use a computer efficiently in the workplace is a skill most employers expect of college graduates. Using laptops in class gives students the daily practice they need to be able to make the transition to a work environment. Students who learn to focus on a lecture in class without being distracted by social media websites and videos not only do better in class, they carry those habits of concentration to their first job as well.

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