Tag: study

Ebooks and Print

New Study Finds Another Reason to Love Print

Although there was a time when everyone thought print was dying and that ebooks were going to take over, we have seen for several years now that this is not the case. Multiple studies have extolled the benefits of print books: they lead to better comprehension, they provide a greater sense of progress for the reader, and they don’t have any of the potentially negative effects that come from staring at a screen for too long. However, a new study has found one more reason why people might prefer print over digital.

 

The study, which was conducted by the University of Arizona, claims that one of the reasons why many people prefer print books instead of ebooks is because print gives them a greater sense of ownership. In an interview with Science Daily, lead study author Sabrina Helm said, “In the context of digital products, we thought it would be appropriate to look at how people take ownership of something that’s not really there — it’s just a file on your computer or device or in the Cloud; it’s more of a concept than an actual thing.”

 

Books

Image Via Advantage Book Binding

 

The study included four groups across three generations, and all age groups agreed that they felt a loss of control with ebooks when compared to print. Of course, this feeling is not unwarranted. You can’t share an ebook the way you would a print book, and you can’t resell it when you’re done reading it. Often, you can only download it to a limited number of devices.

 

Ebooks also don’t provide a sense of identity in the way that print books do. People are often nostalgic about certain books from their youth and have emotional attachments to the physical copies of them. Also, the ability to organize print books on shelves where everybody else can see and peruse them acts as a form of self expression for the books’ owners.

 

shelf

Image Via The Eco Guide

 

While no age group was enamored with ebooks, the study did find that millennials, the generation stereotyped for always being attached to technology, are even more likely to prefer print that older generations. This is mostly because the benefits of ebooks and ereaders are largely irrelevant to younger generations, such as the ability to enlarge text or the lightweight quality of ereaders.

 

Basically, a majority of readers don’t feel that digital books provide enough value to make them worth the cost, especially when it’s impossible to own them in the same way you can own print books. Until publishers figure out a way to add value to ebooks and differentiate them from their physical counterparts, print will continue to rule.

 

Feature Image Via Blurb

Teachers in protest

Teachers Across the Globe Struggling With Low-Budgets

Teachers need our appreciation now more than ever. All across the globe teachers today are struggling with painfully low budgets, making it nearly impossible to supply their classrooms with the materials they need, give their students the attention they deserve, and create a safe and steady learning environment. 

 

Last Friday, teachers in Arizona returned to work after a six-day strike protesting the state’s budget cuts. The strike ended because legislative lawmakers agreed to give the teachers a 20% pay raise, along with a budget increase. The only catch, however, is that the new budget will be coming from a tax raise for those living in low-income school districts. Meaning, these tax raises will only really affect working-class and middle-class households and will not affect the wealthier households directly.

 

A strike against a decrease in school budgets also took place last month in Oklahoma City, where tens of thousands of teachers gathered in protest. They were fighting a system that has decreased their schooling budget by more than 30% over the last decade, leaving their school infrastructures in such a bad state indoor volleyball games are often cancelled due to rain that pours down from the ceiling and their textbooks are crumbling to pieces. 

 

Crumbling textbooks

Image Via The Daily Dot

 

Teachers aren’t just struggling with unrealistically low budgets in the United States, however; In England, a survey was released today showing that 90% of teachers claim to have taken money from their “pupil premium” funds in order to fill in the holes of the budget. The pupil premium funding is a resource meant to help students from low-income households strive in school. Teachers are frustrated they’ve had to dip into these funds on multiple occasions in order to afford the supplies they need; worried about how this will negatively affect the students relying on these sources.

 

Statistically speaking, school budgets began to decline in 2009, immediately following the recession. Since then, there’s been a steady decline in budgeting for schools. In 2017 alone, schools cut budgets by more than 7%. These budget declines have led to curriculums and after-school programs being cut, teachers and other faculty being laid off, and classrooms being overpacked with students.

 

Budget Graph

Image via Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

 

Budget cuts don’t just negatively affect teachers; the entire school faculty is being negatively affected. Librarians have been fighting hard to keep their positions within schools; as have coaches, band directors, theatre directors, and more.

 

Last September, this list detailing the ways schools can help fight budget cuts was released. Still, despite their best efforts, it’s impossible for anyone to do their job correctly if they aren’t given the means to do so.

 

So today, make sure the teachers in your life know just how much you appreciate their endless compassion, selflessness, and support. Stand beside them in the fight. Teachers are a necessity. So much of our future as a society depends upon the quality of our schools. Without steady schooling, children aren’t being given the opportunity for a fair and proper education. We need to listen to our teachers; they know what they need.

 

You can donate to classrooms here

 

“Listen to one another like you know you are scholars. Artists. Scientists. Athletes. Musicians. Like you know you will be the ones to shape this world. Show me how many colors you know how to draw with. Show me how proud you are of what you have learned. And I promise I will do the same.”

 -Sarah Kay, Mrs. Ribeiro

 

 

 

Featured Image Via Liberation News

Millennials in libraries

Millennials Use Public Libraries the Most, Says Science

Despite the belief that millennials aren’t reading, aren’t using public libraries, aren’t doing whatever it is that older generations would prefer them to do, according to a 2016 study from the Pew Research Center, millennials are more likely to have visited a public library in the past year than any other generation. 

 

The study found that 53% of Millennials (which the study defined as between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five) have said they used a library or bookmobile in the year prior, while only 45% of Gen Xers, 43% of Baby Boomers, and 36% of the Silent Generation could say the same.

 

The study does not account for on-campus academic libraries at high schools, colleges, or universities.

 

The study also looked at use of library websites, with 41% of millennials utilizing the online resources, compared to 24% of Baby Boomers. The average for adults over 18 was slightly higher, coming in at 31%.

 

The study also looked at demographic differences other than age. 

 

  • Women are more likely than men to say they have visited a public library or bookmobile in the previous 12 months (54% vs 39%), and are more likely to use library websites (37% vs 24%).
  • College graduates are more likely to use libraries or bookmobiles in the previous 12 months than those without a college degree (56% vs 40%), with similar numbers for website use.
  • Parents of children under 18 are more likely to use a library in the previous 12 months than adults without children (54% vs 43%). 

 

Featured image via Signature Reads. 

adorable polar bears

Sadness Can Make You a Better Reader, According to Science

If you’re a bookworm, then chances are you know what the blues feel like. By blues I don’t mean the sophisicated genre of music your grandparents probably listen to, I mean the sort of invisible, heavy cloak of sadness that we wear in our lives—some every day, and others every so often.

 

Sadness is a feeling that every person (maybe even every animal, I don’t know) can identify with. Yet the extent and duration differs dramatically. Sadness isn’t an emotion one may typically see as having advantageous effects, but, according to a recent scientific study, it has a huge advantage when it comes to reading. 

 

According to The Hechinger Report, a scientific study found a link between sadness and analysis, suggesting that readers who experience sadness are better at thinking critically and analyzing ideas that aren’t explicitly stated on the page. 

 

polar bear adorable

Image Via Daisy Gillardini/Global News

 

Sounds like a pretty good perk, right? According to The Hechinger Report, a team of researchers elicited an experiment in which they randomly assigned 160 adults one of two short video clips. Half of the participants viewed an emotional scene from the sports drama The Champ (1979), and the other half viewed scenes from the comedy sketch series Whose Line Is It Anyway?

 

Following the viewings, all of the participants read a passage about the survival of polar bears in the arctic and answered a subsequent reading comprehension test. The participants who were “sad” following The Champ scene were allegedly significantly better at answering the questions. For example, they were better able to infer ideas that weren’t explicitly written on the page as compared to the participants who viewed the comedy series.

 

To confirm the validity of the results, the research team performed another trial with a larger group of participants. Once again their findings pointed to a higher performance on the part of the sad participants when it came to analysis and inference. 

 

“We found that deep learning was better with sadness,” said Caitlin Mills. Mills is one of three authors who published the study, “Being Sad Is Not Always Bad: The Influence of Affect on Expository Text Comprehension.” It was published in the peer-reviewed journal Discourse Processes in October 2017.

 

“We shouldn’t take away from this, ‘Let’s induce sadness!’,” Mills warned. “The main implication is, what the student is experiencing is affecting how they learn.”

 

The connection between emotions and behavior (in this case learning) does provide a silver lining for those too familiar with feelings of sadness. 

 

via GIPHY

 

Featured Image Courtesy of Bored Panda

Harry Potter

Reading Harry Potter Makes You a Nicer Person, Says Science

A study has found that being a Harry Potter fan can make you a nicer person. The Greatest Magic of Harry Potter: Reducing Prejudice was published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology in 2014, and it investigates “whether the novels of Harry Potter can be used as a tool for improving attitudes toward stigmatized groups,” as all seven books “address important social, cultural, and psychological issues.”

 

Researchers found that “reading Harry Potter may effectively help in reducing prejudice” and suggested that the books give readers “an enhanced ability to understand disadvantaged groups,” as they “may have learnt to take the perspective of discriminated group members.”

 

Even more impressive, the study found that reading the books “improved attitudes toward homosexuals among a sample of high school students.” Considering the series is big on promoting tolerance, I’m not surprised. 

 

The study even explains the post-Goblet of Fire angst seen in Harry, concluding that “very positive characters like Harry Potter hide obscure traits and tendencies, with the underlying but key message being that positive and negative aspects of the self coexist in people.”

 

As if we didn’t have enough excuses to binge-read Harry Potter.

 

via GIPHY

 

Featured image via Spin 1038.