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Communications & Media
Annotated Bibliography
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The Effect of Smartphone Communication Tools on Academic Performance (Annotated Bibliography Sample)

To examine sources that explore the effects of smartphone communication tools on academic performance source..
Annotated Bibliography Paul, J. A., Baker, H. M., & Cochran, J. D. (2012). Effect of online social networking on student academic performance. Computers in Human Behavior , 28 (6), 2117-2127. Online social networks have become significantly common across the world. Their communication value cannot be understated. It is therefore understandable that many people would choose to connect with their friends and loved ones on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp. This uptake of this kind of technology is particularly noticeable among the young portion of the population. It is therefore not surprising that this trend is most present in institutions of higher learning. With the advent of smartphones and their ever increasing functionality and affordability, many college students prefer to access online communication tools on the go. Consequently, a vast majority of college students today are connected via online communication tools. This has led to a trend whereby institutions and faculties utilize these platforms to deliver course content materials and to engage students on a variety of issues (Paul, Baker, & Cochran, 2012). While the potential benefits of this interaction are appreciated, concerns have been raised over the effect of these Smartphone communication tools on academic performance. For instance, Paul et al (2012) conducted a study in which they sought to evaluate the relationship between the use of these tools and certain variables such as attention span, student behavior and academic performance. A statistically significant negative correlation was found between the time spent online and academic performance. The same relationship is observed between the time spent online and a student’s attention span.74% of the respondents noted that social networking tools had an adverse effect in terms of poor concentration and procrastination In addition, good time management was found to positively correlate with academic performance (Paul, Baker, & Cochran, 2012).  These outcomes clearly point out to a deleterious effect of uncontrolled usage of Smartphone communication tools on academic performance. It is important to note that the main strength of this study is that it specifically focused on the effect of online social networks, which constitute the majority of time spent online by college students. Kirschner, P. A., & Karpinski, A. C. (2010). Facebook and academic performance. Computers in Human Behaviour , 26 (6), 1237-1245. The emergence and advancement of social media has led to a revolution in the way people communicate. Nowadays, online engagement has become the norm with people sharing texts, images, audio and video files on a real time basis. One of the most commonly used social media sites is Facebook. Its users keep growing with each passing day, with current subscriber number standing at slightly higher than a billion people. Kirschner and Karpinski (2010) sought to analyze the impact of this social media site on academic performance of college students. This was achieved by comparing time spent on Facebook to time spent studying in a week. This data was then compared to Grade Point Average (GPA) as reported by students (Kirschner & Karpinski, 2010). More than 50% of the respondents who admitted to frequent Facebook use reported declined GPA scores. One clear outcome that the authors assert is the fact that processing different large volumes of information simultaneously is disadvantageous as compared to processing such information sequentially. Unsurprisingly, it was established that students who frequently use Facebook spent fewer hours studying per week thereby negatively affecting their GPA, which was found to be lower than for those students who are non-users of Facebook (Kirschner & Karpinski, 2010). This study has distinguished itself by specifically focusing on Facebook alone as opposed to a general view of online communication tools. It therefore presents a fairly detailed research of the effect of Smartphone online communication tools on academic performance. However, it suffers one weakness in the sense that it ignores other variables that affect academic performance in college. Junco, R. (2012). In-class multitasking and academic performance. Computers in Human Behavior , 28 (6), 2236-2243. Given the nature of the current college classroom context, technology-enabled multitasking has proven to be quite helpful in the propagation of knowledge. Students can access a myriad collection of information online to supplement the guidance provided by their lecturers. Further, real time education collaboration has become a reality. However, despite these gains being realized by the modern student, certain pitfalls have also emerged. This study sought to investigate the relationship between multitasking I the classroom and academic performance as observed in a college setting. A large sample of students was selected for this investigation and their Smartphone usage behavior analyzed. Of the 1839 students surveyed, majority reported spending an average of 60 minutes daily on Facebook, 43 minutes searching the web, 22 minutes on email and sending an average of 71 text messages while studying or doing schoolwork. It was established that different usage behavior had different impacts on academic performance. For instance, the use of social media such as Facebook, and text messaging negatively affected GPA (Junco, 2012). Interestingly, phone calls, emails and using web search engines were found to have no significant impact on GPA. However, it should be noted that the author asserts the disruptive nature of multitasking on the learning process (Junco, 2012).  One key advantage of this study is that it utilized a large sample, thereby increasing the comparative accuracy of the results. In addition, it evaluated the effect of different uses of Smartphone technology on academic behavior, thereby ensuring comprehensiveness. Fox, A. B., Rosen, J., & Crawford, M. (2009). Distractions, Distractions: Does Instant Messaging Affect College Students' Performance on a Concurrent Reading Comprehension Task? CyberPsychology & Behavior , 12 (1), 51-53. Instant messaging among college students has proven to be particularly popular owing to its real time nature and convenience. In essence, it can be sad to be the digital equivalent of a conversation. While its growth and adoption has surged over the past few years, issues have been raised with regard to its effect on cognitive abilities as indicated by academic performance. Fox et al (2009) investigated the link between instant messaging and academic performance in the context of a college environment. This study particularly sought to evaluate the impact of instant messaging on reading comprehension scores among college students. Research subjects were divided into two groups. The first group was allocated a reading comprehension task only while the second group was given the same task but instructed to undertake instant messaging simultaneously. Those who did their assignments while instant messaging at the same time took relatively longer to complete their tasks as compared to those who were solely focused on the assignment (Fox, Rosen, & Crawford, 2009). This implies a cognitive disruptive effect of instant messaging. Further investigation also highlighted the negative effect of simultaneous instant messaging while studying as revealed by lower GPA scores (Fox, Rosen, & Crawford, 2009). It should also that the respondents had non-academic related applications open on their phones for approximately 42% of the class time. Therefore, it is clear that Smartphone-mediated multitasking negatively affects concentration levels thereby resulting in adverse outcomes. This study presents clear evidence of the disadvantageous relationship between Smartphone usage and academic performance. However it suffers one major setback; it utilizes a relatively smaller sample to arrive at its conclusions as compared to other studies. College of Education, Health and Human Services. (2015, March 5). As College Students' Smartphone Use Goes Up, Students' Smarts in The Classroom Go Down. Retrieved February 22, 2016, from Kent State University: /kent/news/college-students%E2%80%99-smartphone-use-goes-students%E2%80%99-smarts-classroom-go-down It is an established fact that as smartphones become more advanced in terms of the features available in them, college students spend more and more time using them. In addition, Smartphone usage has become synonymous with the modern college student. This presents a clear opportunity to effectively deliver tailor made educational contents to students with increased convenience. Further, access to study and research materials has been dramatically broadened owing to this technology. However, the amount of time spent on non-educational material on these devices poses a risk for the academic development of these students. The entertainment value offered by smartphones is quite significant (College of Education, Health and Human Services, 2015). This is in terms of social networking tools, games, music and video sites just to mention a few. Consequently, the distractive abilities of these devices in an academic setting are quite potent. It is becoming increasingly challenging for students to self-regulate their Smartphone usage in the face of all these attractions. The downside to this development is that students perform relatively poorly owing to placing diminished attention on their studies. This research indicates a negative correlation between frequent Smartphone usage and GPA for students with relatively similar abilities and backgrounds. For example, the high frequency group had a mean GPA of 2...
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