Dr. Janet Waters

My eportfolio and research blog

The Upside of Distractibility

Distractibility can be adaptive! True, you’ve been reading about all the ways distractibility is maladaptive – as it is correlated with a lower working memory span and interrupts the sustained concentration and task immersion needed to learn new, difficult or… Continue Reading →

Games, games, games

Check out Irresistible: The rise of addictive technology and the business of keeping us hooked, by Adam Alter. (his Ted Talk can be accessed at https://www.ted.com/talks/adam_alter_why_our_screens_make_us_less_happy Alter does an excellent analysis of the psychological, situational and physiological factors and principles… Continue Reading →

What does Facebook know about you?

The Persuasion Machine of Silicon Valley. On The Passionate Eye. Fascinating – and scary – stuff. http://www.cbc.ca/passionateeye/episodes/the-persuasion-machine-of-silicon-valley Did  you know your on-line behaviour reflects your Big 5 Personality traits, interests, preferences, occupation, intelligence, hobbies,  political preferences, religiosity? Really, all about… Continue Reading →

“I am my phone”!

Our phones, like our other tech, and like our belongings, spaces, even our clothes, reflect – and may be become a part of – our identity. Gosling, Ko, Mannarelli and Morris (2002) and other researchers have noted that a person’s… Continue Reading →

Tech Breaks – should we or shouldn’t we?

Should we have tech breaks in class to allow the addiction/distraction temporary free reign, as Rosen has suggested? Plus side to brief tech breaks: Students may be less tempted to check their phones if they know there will be a… Continue Reading →

“Drawn to Distraction” – the student experience

Aagard (2016) recently studied tech distraction in class with a qualitative study of the student experience of off-task use of technology. Instead of surveys, he used qualitative methods such as participant observations and indepth interviews. As I’ve noted in other… Continue Reading →

Put. That. Phone. Down.

Capilano Universe talk WEDNESDAY, APRIL 4 Burnaby Public Library, McGill Branch 7 – 8:45 p.m. 4595 Albert Street, Burnaby Why can’t they—and you—ever stop texting/facebooking/ youtubing/emailing/gaming? I reviewed current psychology research about when, where and why people are distracted by… Continue Reading →

Sleep, to knit the ravelled sleeve of care

And then there’s the related issue that our evening and night time use of screens to text, email, watch Netflicks, game, etc. affects our sleep. This is a major health issue, especially for students, and there is a urgent need… Continue Reading →

Douglas Adams quote about technology

Douglas Adams, author of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (don’t forget your towel) wrote in The Salmon of Doubt that “I’ve come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies: 1. Anything that is in the world… Continue Reading →

Resistance is futile

So say the Borg. What I’ve been noticing over the course of my research is that people often argue with me about the copious and consistent research findings that texting in class decreases their grades, that having a laptop on… Continue Reading →

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