1.1 Problem Presentations
Understandably, cell phones are innovative technology in the modern world. It is an amazing thing that almost everyone has a phone in the modern world. However, the reason students fancy this device in the learning institutions has triggered intensive debate. Some feel that allowing students to use mobile phones will be a distraction to their studies, building chances for examination cheating and risking the students to irresponsible behaviors. On the other hand, some feel that mobile phones are essential tools during emergencies, research work, and keeping touch with the guardians or the teachers for support needed in a particular time. Different literatures have revealed the advantages, disadvantages and the consequences of using the mobile phones. In 2012, Learning Technology Association observed that the number of teenagers having phones has increased from 72%-89%. In 2010, the U.S Higher Educational Sector recommended implementation of policies prohibiting the usage of cell phones in the high schools. However, some parent approached the superintendents on the same issues, lifting some of the regulatory policies made. Should cell phones be banned or allowed in schools? How caregivers perceives the overall usage of mobile phones by their teenagers? There are possible avenues to address these queries. Despite the critics’ views on the importance of allowing the students to possess mobiles phones in their classrooms, cell phones should be banned because they present a distraction that is not needed especially to the students. This idea will prevent cheating, immorality, and mental distractions; hence responsible behaviors and accountability in the learners.
To begin with, allowing the students to have cell phones in the learning institutions will lead to misuse of these devices. For instance, the modern technology has incorporated extra features to the mobile phones creating a significant difference from the phone model produced in the last few decades. These features include MP3 players, Short Message Services, Facebook, Whatsapp, and the blue tooth services. Some of these features are likely to harm the concentration of the students in their studies since they find fun in socializing; sending text messages to one another, sharing photos and videos (Ling 109). In some instances, mobile phones may contribute to cyber bullying, whereby a student may send vulgar messages to another or even share immoral videos to their peers. This information disorganizes the students’ mental setup, making it harder for them to concentrate on their studies. Subsequently, this translates to conflicts among students, irresponsible behaviors, and lack of ethics in their daily life. Scientific research indicates that the mind develops depending on what it is fed. Meaning, if the student are exposed to meaningful information in their early development stage, their mind is likely to capture adapt to such information; hence facilitating innovation and creativity. Conversely, some information is likely to be damaging to the children when they are subjected. Such persons will strive to achieve what is advocated in the information, thus complicating their live. Accordingly, the different measures can apply to solve the challenges presented by the use of mobile phones in the learning institutions (Kuyath 275). Confiscation of the cell phone by the school administration has long been fruitful although very controversial. Taking cell phones from the students and never return them could help in preventing violation of the school’s policies on the use of the cell phones. When the confiscation policies are implemented in the learning institutions, students will have fears of losing their gadgets, thus preferring to leave them in their homestead than leaving them to their teachers or the schools administrators. This strategy will prevent disrupting students’ studies and automatic failures in the examinations.
Secondly, banning students from having cell phones will reduce distractions during class sessions. For example, funny ringtones especially when receiving calls or the messages might disrupt students’ while in class. This scenario could occur when the students forget to switch off their phones or subject them to silent modes during the class sessions. Different researchers have shown that successful learning occurs in a conducive environment where communication between teachers and learners is efficient. Moreover, a good environment provides teachers will a favorable condition to study the behaviors of the students as well as solving problems that they might find offensive to reveal to them. Therefore, banning of the cell phones in the learning environment will guarantee teachers simplicity in teaching profession, making them enjoy their career. Similarly, students will have adequate time for research activity in the library and laboratories, reaping maximally since there will be no distractions.
Thirdly, many parents recognize the importance of banning cell phones citing that they reduce their knowledge retention. In fact, Harrington and Elaine (2013) observed, “Phone addiction especially to the teenagers leads to substitution of the essential information with the less important information that could emerge social media platforms” (354). Some information posted on the social websites such as Twitter and Facebook could be viral to the learners. The music, chat and the videos transmitted could add more harm than benefits to a student. When youths are addicted to the cell phones, they become vulnerable to loss of memory since the mind is preoccupied with other things. Subsequently, some students will be dependent of the mobiles phones during the examinations, hence cultivating the cheating.
However, some may claim that phones are essential learning tools; students may direct them to the wrong use. For example, cameras, calculators, and internet are some of the tools that students use to compromise examination ethics. Most of the students who have prior cases pertaining exam irregularities suggests that there were they were using these mobile phones since their libraries lack some of the material that could be found on the internet. Far from this notion, students have the habit of creating jokes to the fellow students through text messages during the class hours. Instead of learning, some students utilize significant fraction of their time gaming over their phones. If it is a “technology thing” that teenagers should have mobile phones, they should leaves them at their homestead to help in building a sustainable learning environment. Moreover, the school administration should secure adequate learning materials in the library, laboratories, and the workshops. Embracing technology in such areas will promote high research work and motivate students in doing studies (Kolb 40).
Second, prohibiting cell phones in the learning institutions will ensure that the students utilize the precious time in doing constructive activities. Imagine a case where a student misplaces his or her mobile phone. Such a student will be mentally disturbed, making it hard to concentrate on the academic matters. Moreover, it is not every pupil can afford the mobile phone. In such a case, the less fortunate student may have low esteem from lacking a tool of identity among the fellow students. The effects will rob off the learner confidence of self-expressions making the schooling life difficult. The mental instability could result in poor performance to the unfortunate students. In severe mental disorganization cases, a student may be jealous over the fellow student, tending to damaging the cell phone or stealing. Therefore, the most effective means of preventing such incidences is by banning possession of the mobile phones in the learning vicinity (Junco and Dianne 288).
Third, banning mobile phones will reduce conflict and bullying behaviors among students the in sense that there is no one who will pry into the privacy information of the fellow student. Since teenagers use mobile phones to share their personal matters, they have resistances when anyone is trying to log into their social accounts to preview the information shared. Statistics shows that cyber bullying 39% of the teenagers have ever experienced cyber bullying 68% of the young mobile users utilize them in sending ill messages and unethical videos or music. Creation of bad relations between students will create jealousy, hindering sharing of academic information among them (Straubhaar and Lucinda Davenport 328). Such environment cannot accommodate teamwork; hence learning will be terrible. It means that banning of the cell phones in the learning environment will enhance good relations and equality among students. Their moral and class standards are likely to be high.
Some argue that cell phones should be allowed in the classrooms since they help the parent to keep touch with their children. One can acknowledge this idea, but every student is always under the care of his or her teachers whenever they are in the learning institution. Alternatively, students should develop the habit of reporting their issues or needs to their teachers who could provide immediate support before reaching to their parents. Still, the nagging behaviors of the students towards their parents would hamper their maturity into responsible beings if the usage of the cell phones could be tolerated in the schools. Therefore, the time, efforts, and other resource investments for their education would go to waste.
Despite the perception that mobile phones are a rich source of academic information, the educations management board should ensure that the learning institutions meet the standards of providing quality education. The libraries should have adequate materials where students can performance research studies are will without congesting or queuing for these services. Still, the laboratories should be spacious, and equipped with the adequate computers to serve the learners. In such a learning environment, there is no reason students should be in possession of the mobile phones. Alternatively, abolishing mobile phones from the learning environment will reduce parental control over their children when they are in schools. The school management is likely to have a good time to afford better and quality management without external interferences.
The availability of the mobile phones with the students will not prevent the occurrence of the emergencies as cited by many guardians. Alternatively, the learning institutions should invest in the health management programs to ensure that they can provide timely assistance to the students before the situation aggravating. Effective learning is attained through healthy living.
The risks of wasting the students’ potential by permitting the use of mobile phones in the learning institutions are high. There is no need for the parent to invest in such expensive gadgets while the school management has provided inclusive aspect to ensure productive learning. Also, parents, teachers, and learners will be free from mental distractions that could arise if such device got lost or is damaged. Still, the examinations will create a fair ground for every student since some will not work underhand strategies to pass. Therefore, banning cell phone in the learning institutions should be welcomed.
Harrington, Christine, and Elaine Weir-Daidone. Student Success in College: Doing What
Works! : a Research-Focused Approach. , 2013. Print.
Junco, Reynol, and Dianne M. Timm. Using Emerging Technologies to Enhance Student
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International Society for Technology in Education, 2011. Print.
Kuyath, Stephen J. The Social Presence of Instant Messaging: Effects on Student Satisfaction,
Perceived Learning, and Performance in Distance Education. , 2008. Print.
Ling, Richard S. The Mobile Connection: The Cell Phone’s Impact on Society. San Francisco,
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Straubhaar, Joseph D, Robert LaRose, and Lucinda Davenport. Media Now: Understanding
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Learning, 2010. Print.