A recent article from NPRed mentioned that now there is an app that tracks the time students spend on activities – and yes, smartphones may predict your grades.
Lead investigator Andrew Campbell understands it sounds a bit “creepy”, but the how of the technology is actually quite simple. The phone knows if you have been studying, knows if you are asleep or awake, because smartphones have WiFi and GPS locators, an accelerometer which predicts movement, and a microphone which detects sound. Phones can also detect if they are being charged, or overused.
With this knowledge, researchers at Dartmouth University have designed an app that can guess how students are spending their time – and predict the outcome of their end of term grades with an uncanny accuracy.
The android app models several different scenarios:
Sleeping – your phone is charging, you are not interacting with it and it is dark at night
Activity – you are walking or running
Study – you are at a popular study location, such as a library, computer lab, or coffee shop for at least 20 minutes. The noise is low and y9ou aren’t checking your phone very often and you are staying in one spot or roaming around with purpose.
Partying – you are at a known party location, such as a fraternity or sorority. It’s noisy, and it”s a night that typically is for partying.
What results can it predict? Well, for one thing,. students who study more get better grades. But more surprising, students who prioritized their time and activities tended to do well.