Quick Links – Digital dementia; college debt without a college degree; college graduation rates not keeping up

by Grace

Digital dementia may be an emerging problem

While dementia is a disease that typically plagues the elderly, a new type of cognitive condition is affecting younger individuals in their early 20s and teens – a disorder known as “digital dementia.”

Digital dementia is characterized as the deterioration of brain function as a result of the overuse of digital technology, such as computers, smart phones and Internet use in general, Medical Daily reported.  This excess use of technology leads to unbalanced brain development, as heavy users are more likely to overdevelop their left brains, leaving their right brains underdeveloped….

Common symptoms of digital dementia include memory problems, shortened attention spans and emotional flattening.

According to experts, this disorder has become a significant problem in South Korea, which is home to the world’s largest population of Internet users.  The World Bank found that 83.8 percent of South Koreans have Internet access, and The Wall Street Journal estimated that 85 percent of the country’s population will have smartphones by 2017.

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‘Third of student loan borrowers never earned degree’ (CBS News)

(MoneyWatch) One out of every five adults 20 years of age or older owe money on student loans, and more than half of them are worried about this debt, according to a new study by the Urban Institute.

The exact figures for American adults: 19.6 percent have student loans and 57 percent are concerned about repayment.

A third of the debtors are not college graduates, and 9 percent of them possess only a high school degree. The high school graduates may have incurred debt by pursuing nondegree training or helping to pay for a child’s education. Some 25 percent attended college but did not graduate.

Women worry more.

Women are no more likely to incur college debt than men, but they are 8 percent more prone to worry about it….

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‘College graduation rates in the United States are continuing to slip behind’ those of other countries.

College graduation rates in the United States are continuing to slip behind, according to a report published on Tuesday by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, failing to keep pace with other advanced nations.

Dropped from fourth to 11th place

In 2000, 38 percent of Americans age 25 to 34 had a degree from a community college or a four-year institution, putting the nation in fourth place among its peers in the O.E.C.D. By 2011, the graduation rate had inched up to 43 percent, but the nation’s ranking had slipped to 11th place.


4 Comments to “Quick Links – Digital dementia; college debt without a college degree; college graduation rates not keeping up”

  1. So assuming that Americans are not actually stupider than people in the 10 countries ahead of us, should we be looking at their policies to see how they are doing it? Which countries? I tried looking at the link but couldn’t find the exact charts with the info. I see they mentioned Canada and Israel as countries that do better than us. I think both those countries have heavily subsidized higher education systems.


  2. Page 57 of this link has the list of countries: http://www.oecd.org/edu/eag2013%20(eng)–FINAL%2020%20June%202013.pdf

    Iceland, Poland, U.K., NZ, and Denmark are the top five countries.

    I don’t think percentage of college graduates should be a key metric to use to cure what ails us now. Since we have Too many college graduates are chasing too few college-level jobs and There is little evidence that increased education spending drives economic growth. Plus pushing too many (unprepared) people into college has the effect of watering down higher education standards.


  3. I honestly don’t think Israel has watered down their standards to achieve their completion rates. And they lead the world in high tech startups – a very dynamic economy. What are they doing that we could copy?

    And while there are certainly problems with too few jobs for college grads, the outlook for non-college grads is far worse.


  4. Hmm, maybe we could copy Israel’s requirement for national service before attending college. But I suspect that the US has a higher percentage of young people unfit for armed services (weight & academic skills) than does Israel, so there’s that problem.


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