Study shows ringtones adversely affect concentration

Mobile ringtones, especially songs, can be extremely distracting, according to a study by Washington University at St. Louis.

By Digit NewsDesk | Published 16 Feb 2012 18:46 IST
Study shows ringtones adversely affect concentration
Study shows ringtones adversely affect concentration

A recent study by Washington University claims that mobile ringtones affect concentration adversely, especially catchy ringtones – like your favourite song. The study claims that mobile phones only on silent mode, without even vibration, are the only way to avoid being distracted.

The study’s lead author, Jill Shelton, explained: “Many of us consider a mobile phone ringing in a public place to be an annoying disruption, but this study confirms that these nuisance noises also have real-life impacts. These seemingly innocuous events are not only a distraction, but they have a real influence on learning.”

The researchers used an undergraduate psychology lecture at Louisana State University as the site for the experiment, where Shelton posed as a student. In the middle of the lecture, she allowed her mobile phone to keep ringing, within her handbag, for about 30 seconds.

Students at the end of the lecture were given a test, and on average, performed 25 per cent worse on that portion of the test which preceded Shelton’s phone ringing. This was despite a slide show of the preceding portion being displayed during the interruption.

While the results were quite obvious - a distraction is a distraction - solutions in most locations aren't always possible, though of course, it couldn't hurt to take a little more care at places other than just classrooms, offices, and movie halls. It could be your sibling studying in the next room.

Source: Daily Mail

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