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How Business Students Spend Their Time—Do They Really Know?

How Business Students Spend Their Time—Do They Really Know?,John R. Tanner,Geoffrey Stewart,Glenn M. Maples,Michael W. Totaro

How Business Students Spend Their Time—Do They Really Know?   (Citations: 1)
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The purpose of this paper is to determine how students majoring in some area of business spend their time, relative to how they think they spend their time. In order to assess this gap, undergraduate business students who were enrolled in the first or second business statistics course at a regional southern university were required to record in a logbook, for a period of one week, the number of hours they spent using YouTube, FaceBook, MySpace, the number of hours they watched TV, the number of hours spent studying, as well as several other items. Students in the statistics classes were chosen because all business students, regardless of their major, have to take these courses, and the researchers felt that this was the best way to get a representative group of all business majors. Data was collected from a total of 212 business majors. Additionally, before they started this one-week period, the students were asked to determine, to the best of their abilities, the amounts of time they thought they spent on these activities. Tests of significance revealed ten (10) significant differences between the actual time spent on the activities selected, and the pre-conceived estimate of time spent on these activities. On nine of these significant differences, the students thought they spent more time on the specific activity than they actually did. This would seem to indicate that students need to improve their time management skills. For example, students estimated that they spent more than 1.5 times more time using FaceBook and MySpace than they actually did, and estimated twice as much on Moodle (an open source course management system) as they actually did. Our findings should be of value to students, faculty, and advisors. It is very likely that many students are unaware of such differences, and if they can be made aware of them, by either faculty or advisors, or both, it should result in higher academic performance by the students. The results may also lead to students devoting more attention to developing their time management skills, which should enhance their personal development, and even their collaborative learning skills.
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