I am involved in a co-taught course. I lecture 4-5 times and the others professors give guest lectures during the term. I sit in the back and listen to the lectures. Occasionally, I walk around the class and it’s quite breathtaking to see the number of students on Facebook, downloading music/games/movies, and playing video games. Most of the students using laptops are taking notes or have a notes screen up and their email.
Now that I have graded more material in the term and know more students, I see a correlation between multi-tasking, er paying attention, and grades. Granted this is anecdotal and not a scientific commentary that I am offering here. The course syllabus states collegiality and this includes keeping computing to note taking. Perhaps I am a scratched CD here, but there is something to be said about being in the moment in a class and paying attention. Maybe I’m still thinking about Seth’s comment and my post on Oct 29th?! Maybe.