ACADEMIC PROCRASTINATION AND CYBERSLACKING

C. Silbenberg

Academic College of Tel Aviv-Yaffo and Tel Aviv University (ISRAEL)
Lavoie and Pychyl (2001) carried out a research to explore the extent to which time spent online was related to self reports of procrastination (the deferment of actions to a later time or even to infinity). They concluded that "the convenience, speed, and accessibility of the Internet and accompanied bias of technological productivity have served to create a tool for procrastination".
Although Lavoie and Pychyl's research refers to procrastination at work, procrastination is also widespread in academic contexts (Gafni and Geri, 2010) . It is a prevalent problem, especially among young adults. It is estimated that anywhere between 50% and 95% of college students engage in procrastination (Knaus, 2000). Procrastination may become an impediment to academic success because it decreases the quality and quantity of learning while increasing the severity of stress and negative outcomes in students’ lives (Ferrari et. al., 1995)
"Cyberslacking" also known as "Cyberloafing" has become a common trend in some organizations. The term refers to the employees' non-work related use of the provided e-mail and the Internet while working.
As technology penetrates deeper into educational settings, we witness a similar phenomenon in our classes.The students come to class with their personal computers or I-phones with the latest applications and surf to non-related educational sites or personal e-mails during the lesson.
Hence, this increasing affordability and access to the Internet may constitute a barrier to learning unless it is properly tackled.
I will present some theoretical background to the notions of academic procrastination and cyberslacking and suggest ways to cope with them.