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Research: College Students Use Internet for Education ... Huh

Whatever else your students are doing on the Internet, they are using it for educational purposes as well. According to a study released last week by Houghton Mifflin, more than half of college students use the Internet "to keep up with course work and prepare for exams."

Fifty-nine percent of college students in the survey reported using online study aids, with 78 percent of those students saying they use online quizzing--the single most popular school-related use of the Internet.

In addition, about 29 percent use video tutorials; 24 percent engage in online tutoring; and 16 percent participate in online study groups. The poll also asked students whether they'd be willing to purchase electronic versions of their textbooks; one-third voted yeah.

On the whole, the report found, college students have good study habits. But distractions include music and other entertainment (44 percent); the computer (43 percent); and, oddly, caffeine and "sugar/food" (36 percent).

The study, conducted in July, was underwritten by the Houghton Mifflin College Division. Results are based on a survey of 896 students currently enrolled in college. There's a margin of error of ±5 percent.

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About the Author

David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 25-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).

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