Thursday, April 22, 2010

Students are addicted to information

The ICMPA out of the University of Maryland released results from their study of students and media today. I came across the study this morning when I saw a headline of "College Students' Dependence of Social Media is akin to an Addiction." The first few places I read about the study said this "addiction" was like a drug addiction. Most places quoting this study, focus on just the Social Media aspect of the study.

When I was reading the study I found not only did they ask students to go with out Social Media, but they asked student to go completely media free! The research team identified 8 sources of media to avoid. These include email, text messaging, phone, iPod/Radio, Facebook, television, internet, and print (Newspaper and magazines). Basically, anything that can deliver a message.

It surprises me people are surprised that students had an issue with this. Yes, students will have an issue with this because we just sent them back pre 1700s for 24 hours.

Imagine for a moment trying to find a friend to go to lunch with. Now you have to get in your car with the radio off avoiding all billboards on the highway to get to a friend's house to see if they are there just to ask if they want to go to lunch.

In the video of the research presentation, one of the speakers said it best. "It's not the syringe one's addicted to, it's what inside." Students have the need for information no matter what the channel is to get it.

You can see video of the research presentation here (skip to about min. 10)