How to use your phone in the classroom

Kiralynn Edmondson

Whether you pull out your phone to look at the time or to see if anyone is trying to get in touch with you. We are all addicted to the technology in our hand held. Everyone is guilty of doing this in class.

But the question is, should we be allowed to use our handheld in the classroom? Would learning be easier with it? Or will it take away from the lesson and distract students with social networking, texting, and other unrelated subjects?

Handheld devices link us to the Internet, record lectures, and remind us of important due dates. They can be very helpful for students inside the classroom, and even more helpful when we leave the classroom to replay lectures while studying.

Just as handheld devices can be helpful to students, they can also become a distraction to the students sitting around you and also to the instructor.

“An immature student will think its fun to do something other than learn in the class he/she has paid for,” said Renee Garcia, a Saddleback anthropology instructor. “A responsible student may use it to check current news on a topic or to record lecture and set assigned due dates.”

So how can we use our phones appropriately during class?

Now before you pull out your phone in class to record a lecture, set dates, or check up on class related subjects, check with your instructor.

According to the student handbook, Code of Conduct Section N: Unauthorized recording, dissemination,and publication of academic presentations or materials. This prohibition applies to a recording made in any medium, including but not limited to, handwritten or typewritten notes.

Although recording lecture can be very helpful to us students, we must check with our instructors before-hand to make sure they are okay with it.

We need to use respect in the classroom when it comes to using our handheld devices.

Yes, we do pay for our classes, and it is our own loss when we miss important points because we were playing with our handheld. But it is also blatantly disrespectful to pull out your device and start messing around with it while an instructor is teaching.

It is just common courtesy to at least pretend you’re listening, instead of making it obvious to the students around you and the instructor that you just don’t care. It’s a common respect that all of us students should have, when someone is speaking to us we give them our attention. We have been taught this since kindergarten and even before cellphones were popular.

So think twice when you go to pull out your handheld in class. Think, is this an appropriate time to go on Facebook? Can it wait until after class? Same with texting. Wait until there is a pause in the class to pull your phone out and set a reminder in it.

Use your handheld productively and respectively. Put it on silent, and check with your instructor before recording their lecture.  

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