Collections of Essays

Motivating Millennials: How to Promote Active Student Reading in an Online Era

Popular websites such as SparkNotes, GradeSaver, and Shmoop offer student-geared synopses of texts taught in the humanities. As instructors discover, even strong students often check such e-guides rather than trust their independent response to a work, while some students rely on these websites for their entire interpretation of a text, if not also as a substitute for the actual reading. The availability of online ‘study aids’ is clearly a temptation for students to let others do their critical thinking for them—the antithesis of the central goal of higher education.