Saturday, 20 April 2013

Too much time spent texting, on Facebook may lower grades

Too much time spent texting, on Facebook may lower grades, According to Health Day News on Saturday, media use is a serious distraction for college freshmen, with a new study finding young women devote up to 12 hours daily on pursuits such as texting, posting status updates and surfing the web.

For the study, which was published in the April 11 online issue of the journal Emerging Adulthood, researchers surveyed nearly 500 female freshmen at a university in the northeastern United States.

They were asked to recall how they spent their prior week in terms of 11 activities: watching television or movies, listening to music, surfing the Internet, social networking, texting, talking on the phone, reading magazines, newspapers or non-school-related books, and playing video games.

GPA results were collected in January and June.

The women were also asked to grade their academic confidence and to note potential problems such as lack of sleep, use of drugs or alcohol, and failure to attend class or complete homework.

When the likelihood of multi-tasking was taken into account (using media while engaging in other non-media-related activities), the authors found the students were devoting nearly 12 hours a day on average to media-based activities.

And those with more media usage were more likely to report behaviors likely to hurt their academic performance. The exceptions: listening to music and reading newspapers were linked to higher grades.

Study author Professor Paul Kirschner said:

'The problem is that most people have Facebook or other social networking sites, their emails and maybe instant messaging constantly running in the background while they are carrying out other tasks.
'Our study, and other previous work, suggests that while people may think constant task-switching allows them to get more done in less time, the reality is it extends the amount of time needed to carry out tasks and leads to more mistakes.'

The Facebook users among them had a typical grade point average - a score from zero up to four - of 3.06. Non-users had an average GPA of 3.82.

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