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Scholars Turn Their Attention to Attention - The Chronicle Review

Scholars Turn Their Attention to Attention - The Chronicle Review
Imagine that driving across town, you've fallen into a reverie, meditating on lost loves or calculating your next tax payments. You're so distracted that you rear-end the car in front of you at 10 miles an hour. You probably think: Damn. My fault. My mind just wasn't there. By contrast, imagine that you drive across town in a state of mild exhilaration, multitasking on your way to a sales meeting. That illusion of competence is one of the things that worry scholars who study attention, cognition, and the classroom. "Heavy multitaskers are often extremely confident in their abilities," says Clifford I. Indeed, last summer Nass and two colleagues published a study that found that self-described multitaskers performed much worse on cognitive and memory tasks that involved distraction than did people who said they preferred to focus on single tasks. Experiments like that one have added fuel to the perpetual debate about whether laptops should be allowed in classrooms. Wait a minute.

http://chronicle.com/article/Scholars-Turn-Their-Attention/63746/

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Multitasking hurts brain's ability to focus, scientists say Originally published June 6, 2010 at 9:18 PM | Page modified June 6, 2010 at 9:23 PM SAN FRANCISCO — When one of the most important e-mail messages of his life landed in his in-box a few years ago, Kord Campbell overlooked it. Not just for a day or two, but 12 days. Dunning-Kruger Effect: When Distorted Self-Perception and Illusions of Competence Trick Entertainers, Politicians, and Cities American Idol (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Steve Mensing, Editor ♦While many have not heard of the Dunning-Kruger Effect, no doubt more than a few of us have watched those shows starting a new season of American Idol. You know the ones where people, with no talent or skill at singing, grab center stage and draw eye-rolls and muted chuckles from the judges. Surely we’ve seen wannabe politicians become baffled when someone questions them about a major issue. Even some municipalities are said to suffer from inflated self-perception.

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