Junior high and high school students live rich digital lives; however, they still prefer paper to learn, according to a recent study. While the definition of a classroom writing tablet has expanded these days, a recent study shows that paper is still important to productive learning. The Paper and Packaging Board surveyed 4,300 students, parents and teachers in the United States and not only does paper have a role in the classroom, but its use and importance is growing.
The study revealed three themes around the value of paper for learning. First, paper boosts engagement in school. Nearly two-thirds of K–12 teachers (64%) feel students comprehend information better and are more engaged (63%) when they read on paper. Close to two-thirds (64%) of K–12 teachers reveal their students even respond better to lessons that are based on paper textbooks.
Second, paper aids student preparation. The same students who have never known the world without the internet are choosing paper to help them focus and study. For example, more than eight in ten (82%) college students often or always use paper to prepare for exams—they’re using materials such as notecards, handouts, study sheets or printed lecture slides.
Finally, paper is central to documenting achievements and helps build relationships. Professors note that providing feedback on paper is an important part of the learning process, citing that it’s personalized (67%), efficient (54%) and clear (52%), facilitates authentic interactions with students (44%) and helps develop relationships with students (35%).