Continued technology push gets mixed response
As technology continues to be integrated into Seton Hall, professors and students alike have various opinions about the new surge of electronics being introduced into the University’s academics.
Since the fall semester, Seton Hall has tried to improve its technological equipment for its students and faculty. Freshman who enrolled in the fall were welcomed with Windows phones to freely use for the duration of the semester. Since the start of the school year, students also have received new Samsung laptops and tablets which connect to the University’s wireless networks.
The University describes its implementation of technology into its curriculum as what “sets Seton Hall apart from other colleges and universities.”
“I like the ‘connected’ campus on which we work and learn,” said Angelo De Fazio, a communication professor. “Communication requires discussion, and the technology at SHU allows for a continued discussion among students and professors, whether it be via blackboard or email.”
Professor Eileen Moran shares similar positive feelings around this continued push for technology on campus, but said she also believes there are some negative aspects to it.
“I support the University’s choice to become more tech oriented,” Moran said. “That is the way the world is going. But the students do need skills such as public speaking and writing essays, which in the work world would be memos and emails.”
Theology professor Gisela Webb has proven that technology has not necessarily been beneficial for students in her courses.
“I like the almost universal access to knowledge across time and space,” Webb said. “However, over the last several years I have tried both allowing students to use laptops in class and not allowing it. I have surrendered to allowing note-taking on laptops. I am not convinced that it has helped anyone to do better in their grades.”
All three agree that electronics in the classroom is mostly a choice that should be made by students themselves.
“If students want to use laptops in my class, that is fine with me,” Moran said. “But they can serve to distract the students also. I believe that they are mature enough to determine how they need to take notes and to learn.”
Students have opinions about the University’s use of technology and its push to improve its current electronics.
Sophomore Danielle Santana said she thinks it is great that Seton Hall is such a tech-savvy school.
“For one of my classes it was required that we all make a Twitter account and discuss reading before class,” Santana said. “It was an easy and fun way to connect, and it made me enjoy the class a lot more since I use Twitter on a regular basis.”
Freshman Stephanie Powers can understand why professors and students may not be on board with all the new electronics.
“Within my classes, some of my professors allow the use of laptops to take notes,” Powers said. “However, other professors feel that laptops and cell phones can distract students, and prohibit their use. I believe that technology can be very useful, but at the same time very distracting. In class, checking Facebook or Twitter can seem a lot more interesting than a professor’s lecture. Therefore, it is understandable why professors may dislike the use of technology in the classroom.”
Freshmen Gillian Harris and Hannah Cliff likewise had both positive and negative views about Seton Hall’s technology usage.
“It can make things easier and harder in academics,” Harris said.
“Almost all of my classes at least require computers to be used outside of class,” Cliff said.
Danielle Malabuyoc, a freshman business major, criticizes the University’s choice to provide certain students with tablet laptops.
“Although it is lightweight and easy to bring on my travels, there are many glitches such as the touch screen and start up,” Malabuyoc said. “It is irritating to have to bring all the accessories along with you. It would be much easier to just have a normal laptop.”
Natalie Resbiz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.