News

When using your phone helps you succeed at university – and when it makes you fail

Smartphones can improve academic performance, when used appropriately, according to new research by the School of Business.
Kuva puhelimesta kädessä. Kuvaaaja Aalto-yliopisto/ Matti Ahlgren

The study, conducted by Ms. Yanqing Lin,Professor Yong Liu,Mr. Wenjie Fan,Professor Virpi Kristiina Tuunainen,and Professor Shengli Deng, looked into smartphone usage and how it impacts educational achievement in university students.

Their results found a positive, direct impact of using mobile learning and news applications on academic attainment, which contrasts popular belief.

This is because the use of mobile learning applications stifles the feeling of nomophobia, the fear of being unavailable to your mobile phone.

‘Mobile learning acts as part of studying that is practical and compulsory, therefore it is not considered ‘fun’ for most people, which contrasts other apps such as social media. For this reason, users are not going to be distracted from studying, or end up procrastinating,’ says Ms. Lin.

The research revealed that even though the university used in the study did not have any official online e-learning or mobile learning platform, students would often establish class groups on social media to share learning materials and exchange information without any official management.

But the researchers warn that other, non-learning, mobile applications like social media are internalised and can trigger nomophobia.

‘The more time users spend on entertainment apps relates to the level of nomophobia they experience, which in turn alters sleep habits. Changed sleep habits subsequently affect a student’s academic performance,’ says Professor Liu.

For this reason, the researchers believe the simple change of not using a smartphone before bed should alleviate the adverse effects on students’ academic performance.

The study was conducted on 10,000 participants and was published in Computers in Human Behavior journal.

**

Read more in EduTech digi magazine: http://ow.ly/5aTT50FZvch 

  • Published:
  • Updated:

Read more news

Ursula von der Leyen in her opening speech
Cooperation, Research & Art Published:

The New European Bauhaus festival brought together European decision-makers and experts in cross-sectoral sustainable development

Aalto University participated in the New European Bauhaus Festival with its sustainable construction exhibition, Time out! Rethinking construction.
Olli Ikkana in Otaniemi, photo by Lasse Lecklin.
Research & Art Published:

Bioinspired colours and adaptable materials - Professor Olli Ikkala's third EU project builds on living systems

Department of Applied Physics Professor Olli Ikkala received his third Advanced Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) on 11 April 2024. The funding amounts to €2.5 million and the project will run for five years.
Professor Antti Oulasvirta. Photo: Aalto University / Jaakko Kahilaniemi
Press releases, Research & Art Published:

Researchers investigate how AI could better understand humans

Antti Oulasvirta has received a EUR 2.5 million Advanced Grant by the European Research Council (ERC) for the study of user models.
Kuvituskuva, jossa kirkkain värein piirretty tyttö katsoo graafista kuviota.
Research & Art Published:

How to put education policy to the test

Finland is testing changes in national education before committing to them – and showing how randcomized controlled trials can take the guesswork out of policy-making