21 September, 2020

‘The Smartphone Cannot Be Shut Up’

Academic and strategic thinker Kanti Bajpai on the use of smartphones in classrooms.

‘The Smartphone Cannot Be Shut Up’

Academic and strategic thinker Kanti Bajpai has taught at leading universities—including M.S. University of Baroda, JNU, Oxford University and, currently, the National University of Singapore. Before that he has also been headmaster at Doon School for six years. Excerpts from an interview with Pragya Singh:

What can we do to control overuse of smartphones?

The understanding in academia now is that the smartphone cannot be shut up. I’m not sure we can ask students to put them away or turn them off, on any university campus. We had a debate about this at NUS and some felt there should only be students and teachers in a class. Others felt this would be impossible—students are recording lectures, they are pulling down relevant links from the internet, they may pull out documents or research that contradicts what’s being taught. The general view is that they are pulling up something that’s engaging and relevant but even if they are pulling out contradicting stuff, what’s the...



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