A piece, Texting, Surfing, Studying?, written by Perri Klass M.D. talks about teenagers and if they can really "multitask" or if teenagers are just better at oscillating. Also, she talks about parents wanting to help their kids have good study habits.
"The truth is that you really don't multitask, you just think you do; the brain can't process two high-level cognitive things. What you are actually doing is oscillating between the two" (Dr. Christakis). Some kids "multitask" because it does help them think, and by multitasking, in this situation of course, means texting, instant messaging, etc. Teenagers are so use to having everything around them that it's to the point where it helps them concentrate, apparently. Some students are very good at oscillating. However, I am not. It's hard for me to concentrate unless I am by myself without any distractions. Yes, I can get my homework done when I am texting, but I can see where Klass is coming from when she asks herself if teenagers, and whoever else, are really learning something, or just learning on the surface of the point. Parents of teenagers do try to help them with their study habits, but I think it's just different from their parents' study methods. I believe that it's just all opinions on what helps you and fits an individual's personality on how a person concentrates when they study. Also, it can be the very fact of what a person has become accustomed to in his/her life.
This leads to when Klass says "you have to learn how you work and under what circumstances". However, Klass says that "no one can study effectively while watching, listening, surfing, and messaging". I don't fully agree with this. Yes, if we surf the web it can be a distraction, but listening to music can help some people concentrate, even if it is really loud. Cut teenagers and kids some slack- if they do their work, that is. Teenagers, especially, get tired of doing work 24/7 and would like to communicate with their friends every once in a while. Klass' son said that he would instant message while doing some work, but it was just looking up every once in a while. I agree that is alright to do, just don't go overboard. Klass' son also gave advice to his mom about his younger brother saying "not to worry until there is something to actually worry about". Dr. Cooper said that "if they're doing well, permitting them to have some choice permits them to find their own style".
Nobody really knows, honestly, if teens can "multitask", but that doesn't mean that they can switch back and forth between studying and texting. It's all just a matter of how a person studies and what they can do to be successful with studying and making good grades. Let people choose for themselves. Hopefully, they are grown up and smart enough to do what's right.