Peter Lattman at the WSJ Law Blog is asking readers whether Professor David Cole's no laptop policy is a good idea. Cole, who teaches at Georgetown Law, published an anti-laptop essay in the Saturday Washington Post. Like Professor Cole's students, the comments appear to be favoring the ban. But there are some dissenters.
Perhaps this is the knotty empirical question that lies beneath this controversy: What if final exam performance is maximized by laptop transcription, but the quality of class discussion is maximized by no laptops? I think there may be some truth to this. Many students claim that laptop notetaking helps them better distill the information after class. If so, it is quite a conundrum.
Any thoughts on a research design to test it?