From the Memphis "Commercial Appeal":
Over the past week, dissent has been building in the student lounge, in
hushed conversations in the library and halls, and in fervent debates
All because one professor at the University of Memphis law school
banned the use of laptops in her class. Other professors are
considering a ban.
Entman said students were spending too much time typing notes on laptops, and not enough time listening and discussing.
"My main concern was they were focusing on trying to transcribe every word that was I saying, rather than thinking and analyzing," Entman said. "The computers interfere with making eye contact. You’ve got this picket fence between you and the students."
Entman’s students have had three classes without laptops. Cory Winsett, a first-year law student, said his participation in class has dropped because he’s too busy writing notes on the lecture. And his notes are less organized and hard to read when he gets home. "If we continue without laptops, I’m out of here. I’m gone; I won’t be able to keep up," Winsett said.
Classmate Jean Holbert already has applied for a transfer to the University of Mississippi law school because of the ban.
Clive Thompson has some interesting comments on his blog, which is where I spotted this: Should students be banned from using laptops in class?
There’s also much discussion at Plastic: The First Thing We Do, Let’s Kill All the Laptops.