Jerusalem: Ninety-four percent of Israeli high school pupils access social networking sites like Facebook and YouTube via their cell phones during class, a new
study has found.
Some 95 per cent of the pupils take pictures or make recordings during class for non-study purposes, 94 per cent send e-mails and text messages, 93 per cent listen to music during class and 91 per cent actually talk on their phones during class, researchers said.
The study conducted by the University of Haifa also found that in classes with more permissive teachers, cell phone use was lower than in classes where the teacher imposed strict discipline.
"The students use their mobile phones in various ways - to surf the Internet and access social media, to listen to music, take photos, play games, and send text messages and photos," researchers said in a statement.
"Based on our findings, there is almost no moment during any class when some pupil isn't using their cell phone," they said. Although the vast majority of high school students in Israel have cell phones, the extent of their use has never been examined in depth.
This new study sought to determine the scope of use, types of use, when they are used, and whether there was a correlation between cell phone use in class and the type of discipline the teacher imposes in the classroom.
The study led by Dr Itai Beeri and Dana Daniel included 591 pupils in grades 9-12 and 144 teachers of various subjects in three Jewish high schools.
As noted, 94 per cent of the pupils admitted to accessing social media or file-sharing sites like Facebook and YouTube during class, from time to time or even more frequently.
"What stands out is the high use of interactive, multi-user functions, which can be very disruptive during the course of the lesson, and which have potential for long-term, ongoing and cumulative disturbance and damage that far exceeds the physical boundaries of the classroom or the time spent in class," researchers noted.
Surprisingly enough, in classes where the teacher was more permissive, cell phone use was less, while with students with a tougher teacher, cell phone use increased.