Engagement in Digital Lecture Halls: A Study of Student Course Engagement and Mobile Device use During Lecture

Gwendolyn Witecki, Blair Nonnecke
Journal of Information Technology Education: Research  •  Volume 14  •  2015  •  pp. 073 - 090
Universities have experienced increases in technology ownership and usage amongst students entering undergraduate programs. Almost all students report owning a mobile phone and many students view laptops and tablets as educational tools, though they also report using them for non-academic activities during lectures. We explored the relationship between student course engagement and the use of smartphones, laptops, cell phones, and tablets during lecture. Undergraduate students responded to an online survey asking about both course engagement and mobile device habits. Results show that smartphone use was most strongly related to lowered course engagement and while laptop use was related to lowered engagement, it was to a lesser extent. In contrast, overall engagement of students using tablets or cell phones was not significantly different than those who did not.
pedagogical issues; post-secondary education; improving classroom teaching; media in education; interactive learning environments; laptops; smartphones; cell phones; tablets; student course engagement; unstructured mobile device use
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