NSBA poll - student internet use

By Murray Bourne, 22 Aug 2007

A study from the National School Boards Association in the US, New Study Explores the Online Behaviors of U.S. Teens and 'Tweens (no longer available), provides some good insights into the educational implications of teenage Web use.

Nearly 60 percent of online students report discussing education-related topics such as college or college planning, learning outside of school, and careers. And 50 percent of online students say they talk specifically about schoolwork.

Um, yes - could that activity involve the sharing of answers to homework, or genuine collaboration - or a bit of both?

The following figures surprise me:

Almost half of students (49 percent) say that they have uploaded pictures they have made or photos they have taken, and more than one in five students (22 percent) report that they have uploaded video they have created.

The figures are surprising because other studies (like Nielsen's Participation Inequality: Encouraging More Users to Contribute) conclude:

In most online communities, 90% of users are lurkers who never contribute, 9% of users contribute a little, and 1% of users account for almost all the action.

TV is dying

The NSBA study points out that:

Today, students report that they are spending almost as much time using social networking services and Web sites as they spend watching television. Among teens who use social networking sites, that amounts to about 9 hours a week online, compared to 10 hours a week watching television.

This has many implications for education. Why don't teenagers like TV any more? I suspect it's because TV is one-way communication (like school) and has little interaction (also like school).

See the 1 Comment below.

One Comment on “NSBA poll - student internet use”

  1. Brent says:

    The stats on uploading pictures do not at all contradict the stats on community participation. Uploading pictures to your own personal collection of pictures (which is probably where most pictures are being uploaded) is not the same thing as participating in a community. Both of those statistics are about what I would have guessed.

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