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Why More and More Students Are Looking for Social Environments to Study Alongside Each Other?

In: Social Issues

Submitted By emmebyl
Words 481
Pages 2
Recently we have seen a significant change in study behavior of today’s Flemish students (Belgium) of higher education. In exam periods, more and more students are looking for social environments to study alongside each other. Public places such as libraries, study landscapes, student restaurants are receiving large groups of students.
Looking on the broad research literature related to this phenomenon we found two lines of theorizing and research that describe the same phenomenon, but could not offer us a satisfying explanation.
On the one hand recent studies and projects have used thematic pedagogical concepts, such as student-centeredness, active learning, collaborative group work and technological enhancement to drive design for informal learning spaces to provide students with a common area in which to gather, relax, socialize and work together outside classes. The increases use of students studying in these common areas support the success of this redesigning, but not our phenomenon. In Flanders this phenomenon occurs also in old libraries without such innovations.
On the other hand, a lot of research focuses on the current generation of students and their relationship to technology. Termed ‘digital natives’ or the ‘Net generation’, these young people are said to have been immersed in technology all their lives, imbuing them with sophisticated technical skills and learning preferences. These characteristics suggest that this Generation would benefit from a more structured but also more interactive learning experience, which could simply explain this phenomenon. But, recent investigations challenge the empirical evidence for generational changes among students.

Much attention has been paid recently to the collaboration of students in and out of classrooms led by teachers or assistents. The discourse linking students’ out-of-class group work experiences...

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