Click here to go to the main StudentGems site

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Google is 'white bread for the mind'

An article in the Times Online last month really hit home, and as I have an essay due this week I have been reminded of the warnings it gave.
Most students immediately head for Google when starting assignments. Some just want some inspiration, or an idea to start those crucial first few sentences. But far too many (including me) rely on online information, sometimes without knowing whether this information is correct.
Already at university we are warned against sources such as Wikipedia, as anybody can change the information.

“Google offers easy answers to difficult questions. But students do not
know how to tell if they come from serious, refereed work or are merely
composed of shallow ideas, superficial surfing and fleeting commitments."

This focus on students however is slightly misguided, as I'm sure that in all walks of life the importance of instant online information is growing.

It's a great shame that we cannot trust everything posted on the Internet. Whilst this is unlikely to change, we must learn to discern useful sources from those that are untrustworthy.
Or even better, I might try to read more books!

No comments: