Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Journal Title or Book Title

Northeast Business and Economics Association (NBEA) 2018



Publisher's Statement

PUBLISHED BY THE NORTHEAST BUSINESS & ECONOMICS ASSOCIATION © 2018 The Northeast Business & Economics Association reserves the right to publish the Proceedings in both print and electronic formats. The individual authors retain the copyright over their own articles.


Because students’ lives today are saturated with digital media at a time when their brains are still developing, several popular press authors suggest that media use has profoundly affected students’ abilities, preferences, and attitudes related to learning. They claim that “digital natives” (often defined as those born after 1980) have a distinctive set of characteristics that includes preference for speed, nonlinear processing, multitasking, and social learning, allegedly developed through immersion in digital technology during childhood and adolescence. The purpose of this project is to explore claims that the digital “native” generation as learners demonstrate different learning behaviors, by exploring relationships between technology use and productive learning habits. This study will test theoretical assumptions in the literature and popular press, and gather data through survey research to address the possible connection between technology use and learning by asking university students in to report patterns of use across a variety of technologies, as well as their preferences and behaviors when learning about topics that interest them. This data will help us better understand how digital natives themselves see their technology use and approaches to learning, which may in turn provide an empirical basis for both curriculum design that provides students with opportunities for more productive learning behaviors, and academic success. Updated research on this topic can provide better direction for developing the tools and approaches best suited to the delivery of higher education.

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This is the work of business students and faculty member Meryl Rosenblatt.

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