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Multi-tasking or Procrastination?

Andrew Weir
Student Writer

Are you good at multi-tasking? Or do you just give procrastination the nickname of multi-tasking?

Studying or doing homework can go one of two ways – either you sit down and grind out all of your calculus in one sitting, or you open your textbook while at the same time signing into Netflix.

Are you the type to listen to your favorite show and do your work or are you the type who gets distracted by your phone, laptop or gaming system like me? Whatever the case, we all have our own methods and techniques when studying or doing work.

Sophomore Josh Skula has given us a few of his own “do’s and dont’s” when multi-tasking and studying. “First off, make sure you start considering studying at least a week before the test (it will make things a lot less stressful). There is nothing worse than a night-before-the-test-cram. Take breaks. A ten-minute break won’t kill you, and it really helps you stay consistent during a long study session.”

Touching on a few things to avoid, “Any social media is a bad thing to be on when you are trying to study. I myself have wasted a lot of time on Reddit and YouTube. 5 minutes turns into 20 minutes, and next thing you know it is the day before the exam,” explains Skula, “Don’t pull an all-nighter. Make sure you get a good amount of sleep. If you don’t, you may have the urge to take a three-hour nap. Three-hour naps are not naps; they are mistakes.”

We can see the negatives and positives of multi-tasking everywhere. The University of New Hampshire conducted a study to determine the in-class texting attitudes and behaviors of students. They found 80% of college students admit to texting during class; 15 percent say they send 11 or more texts in a single class period. This can have many long-term effects on memorizing what is being taught in the class and being able to stay on top of your work.

Professor of the New Testament, Michael Cosby touched on this subject to give us a view from a different perspective.

“I have no philosophical issue with students using laptops or tablets (or even smart phones) during class sessions if the purpose is to enhance learning. I have found through years of experience, however, that use of such devices during my Encountering the Bible classes is predominantly counterproductive and works against learning instead of enhancing it.”

“I am not totally rigid on the topic,” continues Cosby, “Because so many students have Bible apps on their phones (and do not carry a Bible with them), I allow the use of electronic devices during in-class projects that involve students analyzing particular Biblical texts. The alternative would be to have half the class members just sitting and wasting time instead of actively interacting with Biblical passages.”

Another student, sophomore Greg Shirk, also has a few tips for students who struggle with multi-tasking and studying. “Be honest with yourself. Set realistic goals and don’t just say you are going to do something, follow through with it. Get a friend to keep you accountable in studying. Make time for fun. Get your stuff done quickly so you can take breaks and avoid driving yourself insane. Go to class. You are paying for them, and actually going helps you learn the material. I know, crazy.”

procrastination
The result of procrastination. Gets you every time. Photo retrieved from tumblr.com

Multi-tasking has its ups and downs, but it’s important for us as students to hold ourselves accountable and also make time for the little things that help us get through those stressful days. Ultimately if you can binge watch Breaking Bad AND study for an exam you end up getting an A on – more power to you.

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