A Pew Survey conducted last year noted that today’s always-on technology has mixed reviews when it comes to whether or not it benefits young minds. On the positive side, youth are likely to develop their decision-making capabilities because regular online activities encourage this skill naturally. On the negative side, however, technology doesn’t allow for the practicing of concentration, making it very difficult for kids to focus, to work out a tough problem, or stay involved in a good book. In other words, Generation Y is an easily distracted one.
What is interesting about this survey was that in the 1990s, similar methodology used predicted the problems between online technology and copyright infringement and privacy issues. So, the results of the Pew survey are causing much buzz in academia circles.
There were some key skills which it was determined that young people will need in 2020. They include:
- public problem-solving through teamwork
- excellent online search skills
- analyzing the quality of the information served to them
In order to enable the distracted Generation Y, educational reforms are being discussed which will teach them to not only handle always-on technology, but to also develop the critical focusing skills necessary to succeed.