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Back-to-School: The Scoop on Technology, Texting, and Algebra


Are laptops a back-to-school necessity for American students? Not until high school, according to a new poll from SodaHead: A plurality (33%) of Americans say laptops should be allowed into classrooms when students reach high school, 25% say it's OK for laptops to be used in middle school, and 18% say laptops should be allowed in class when students reach elementary school.

Similarly, 17% of Americans are OK if kids use tablets in elementary school, 20% say kids should wait until middle school to use tablets, and 31% say high school is the right setting to introduce tablets in the classroom. Some 13% say it's not appropriate for tablets to be used in class.

Below, other findings from SodaHead.


Most (41%) Americans say smartphones should be allowed in school, as long as they are turned off. Even so, 28% say smartphones should be banned altogether.

Opinions on texting are slightly more pronounced: Only 18% of Americans say texting in school is OK, whereas 53% say texting should not be allowed. Some 29% say texting should only be allowed in cases of emergency.


With e-Books gaining popularity, the public is still hesitant to make textbooks digital, but there are signs of a gradual shift. Though 36% of Americans don't want to shift to e-books in the classroom, 28% support a shift to digital and 36% are ready for e-books to be in some classes.

Favorite Academic Subjects

SodaHead also asked people about their favorite and least favorite high school classes. The least favorite class was overwhelmingly math, which garnered 40% of the vote. Physical education and English followed, with 17% and 16%, respectfully. English took the title of favorite class with 22% of the vote, followed by history at 21% and science at 18%.

Is College Still Important?

Though 70% of high school students and 74% of college students do feel college is important to get a good job, only 50% of full-time workers and 48% of those unemployed say college is important for getting a job:

About the data: Findings are based on a poll of 2,500 users of, conducted in August, 2012.

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  • by Rishi Fri Aug 24, 2012 via web

    Interesting data on cell phone "approval" rates in classrooms. Marketers need to realize that students do more than just texting on their smart phones when they are in class. A lot of college-oriented brands can take advantage of this. If your brand targets college students, imagine how effective it will be when you run an SMS campaign that targets students when they are in a lecture: E.g: "$20 jeans". The open rate is likely to be higher since there are fewer distractions (other than the 'boring' lecture of course). For more mobile cheat sheets including "10 Tips for Mobile Usability", check out or tips and tricks at

  • by Quinn Mon Aug 27, 2012 via web

    I wouldn’t want to be the marketer whom the public discovers is sending students marketing text messages during class. I would also think that the open rate would be poor during class as opposed to outside of class.

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