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Like all experimental designs, the application to practice is under- 
conceptualized, but this is an intriguing finding. It assumes that  
elaborated, organized encoding happens best at the time of exposure,  
rather than, say, after class--which is dubious--and makes no account  
of the "life" of the notes after 30 minutes.

Nonetheless, it speaks powerfully to docile, mindless "engagement" in  
class.

Best,
Nic
__________________________________
Dominic (Nic) J. Voge
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Associate Director
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On Apr 1, 2014, at 9:49 AM, Norman Stahl wrote:

> March 28, 2014 by Danya Perez-Hernandez
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> Comments (30)
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> Taking Notes by Hand Benefits Recall, Researchers Find
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> Distractions posed by laptops in the classroom have been a common  
> concern, but new research suggests that even if laptops are used  
> strictly to take notes, typing notes hinders students’ academic  
> performance compared with writing notes on paper with a pen or pencil.
> Daniel M. Oppenheimer, an associate professor of psychology at the  
> University of California at Los Angeles, and Pam Mueller, a graduate  
> student at Princeton University, studied the effects of students’  
> note-taking preferences. Their findings will be published in a paper  
> in Psychological Science called “The Pen Is Mightier Than the  
> Keyboard: Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note-Taking.”
> The researchers’ goal was to figure out whether typing notes—which  
> is becoming increasingly popular—has any direct effect on a  
> students’ ability to understand a lecture.
> In a series of studies, the researchers provided students with  
> laptops or with pen and paper to take notes. (The computers were  
> disconnected from the Internet.) Students were then tested on how  
> well they could recall facts and apply concepts. During the first  
> test, students were told to “use their normal classroom note-taking  
> strategy.” Some typed, and others wrote longhand. They were tested  
> 30 minutes later.
> The researchers aimed to measure the increased opportunity to  
> “mindlessly” take verbatim notes when using laptops.
> “Verbatim note-taking, as opposed to more selective strategies,  
> signals less encoding of content,” says the researchers’ report.  
> Although laptop users took almost twice the amount of notes as those  
> writing longhand, they scored significantly lower in the conceptual  
> part of the test. Both groups had similar scores on the factual test.
> In another part of the study, some laptop users were instructed to  
> avoid taking verbatim notes. Instructors explained that “people who  
> take class notes on laptops when they expect to be tested on the  
> material later tend to transcribe what they’re hearing without  
> thinking about it much.” But members of that group received lower  
> scores in both conceptual and factual tests than did their longhand  
> counterparts.
> “While more notes are beneficial, at least to a point, if the notes  
> are taken indiscriminately or by mindlessly transcribing content, as  
> is more likely the case on a laptop, the benefit disappears,” says  
> the report.
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>
> Norman Stahl
> [log in to unmask]
>
>
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