Teen Research Skills on the Internet

Question Mark

So, what do you think, has the Internet harmed students’ research skills?

A new survey of teachers by the Pew Internet & American Life Project  finds that many       educators believe the Internet has shortened students’ attention spans and weakened students’   research skills. I am not so sure about those two statements, but I was fascinated by some of the findings that mirror what our Bridging Information Literacy Across Libraries group discussed this year. A few stats from this blog post include:

  • “While 77 percent of Advanced Placement and National Writing Project instructors agree that the Internet and available search tools have had a “mostly positive” effect on student research, 87 percent say the same tools can easily distract students and contribute to shorter attention spans
  • Even more disconcerting, 64 percent of respondents say modern digital technologies “do more to distract students than to help them academically.
  • The news is not all bad. Of those teachers surveyed, 99 percent say that the Internet provides access to a wider range of sources and information; while 65 percent agree that the web has helped students become self-sufficient researchers

You will have to read the full blog post to get an answer to the six-million-dollar question: Has the Internet conditioned students to expect too much too fast?

Last of all, as you read this post ask yourself why librarians are digging deep to understand what their role is going to be in the future! It seems crystal clear that we will be needed more than ever!

Read the full blog post at  EdTech magazine (12/2012)

If you want to go straight to the source, the overview and  full results of the  Pew Internet survey about How Teens Do Research in the Digital World is located at http://tinyurl.com/ca2noy5