Category Archives: Entertainment

Internet Emerges as Study Aid, not Detractor, for College Students

As millions of college freshman head to campus, a new study reveals that students are stocking their book bag, or rather their computer bag, with online study tools to stay ahead in class. The survey of 896 currently enrolled college students underwritten by Houghton Mifflin Company found that more than half (59 percent) of college students surveyed said they use online study tools to keep up with course work and prepare for exams.

Online quizzing is the most popular online study aid, with 78 percent of students saying they use this tool. Almost as popular are online course outlines that accompany textbooks, with two-thirds of students reporting that they download these study-aids. Rounding out students’ online ‘book bag’ are video tutorials (29 percent), online tutoring (24 percent) and online study groups (16 percent).

Internet Emerges as Study Aid, not Detractor, for College Students “Online study tools are a new resource that today’s wired students can take advantage of that past generations didn’t have access to,” said Katie Rose, who heads research and marketing for Houghton Mifflin College Division. “We’re finding that students are increasingly using online study tools in tandem with their textbooks.”

Old School, New School: eBooks are another digital study tool gaining in popularity, with more than one-third of students saying they would buy an eBook version of a textbook. Whether in paper or digital form, students place a high value on their textbooks. More than two-thirds said they believe having the assigned texts helps them get better grades, and for 75 percent, price is not a primary purchase barrier.

Professor Jeffery Vail, assistant professor of humanities at Boston University, offers this advice to incoming college freshman: “First-semester students can do some relatively simple things to get ahead in the study game, such as taking ‘freestyle’ notes during class and then editing them into outline form later. Honing in on key points and weeding out less important information early on makes studying easier down the road.”

“In my 15 years of teaching, I’ve found that good study habits are inevitably linked to better academic performance. This is as true for freshman as it is for returning students,” he said.

Houghton Mifflin, a leading educational publisher, reports that student usage of textbooks sold with companion online learning tools has increased 100 percent from 2004-2006. Using companion online tools is easy. Students receive a free online access code with their new textbook.

Internet Emerges as Study Aid, not Detractor, for College Students From “Animal House” to Honor Roll: Parents of college students can breathe a sigh of relief. The study reveals that today’s students have surprisingly good study habits. Still, some succumb to age-old distractions.

  • Do students really welcome every distraction? In fact, the majority (65 percent) of students said they use discipline, focus and a lock on their door for privacy during exam week. Not surprisingly, distractions of choice for students are (1) music/other entertainment (44 percent), (2) the computer (43 percent) and (3) caffeine, sugar/food (36 percent).

  • Are students really last-minute crammers? There’s good news and bad news. The good news is that 55 percent of students report studying throughout the semester … but this means that 44 percent are not. Still, only 18 percent called themselves ‘crammers,’ and only 6 percent said they don’t study at all.

  • Are students really late night learners? The majority (49 percent) of students actually said mid-day is their favorite study time, followed by 35 percent who prefer to study in the late night/dawn hours. “To no one’s surprise, only 12 percent of college students said they prefer to study in the early morning, which just goes to show that students really are not morning people,” said Rose.

Survey Methodology: The results of this survey, underwritten by the Houghton Mifflin College Division through third-party Packaged Facts syndicated research author and youth/family market research expert Marta Loeb, are based on a representative national telephone and Internet survey of 896 students currently enrolled in college. The survey was conducted July 12-16, 2007. The margin of error is + or – 5 percent.

About Houghton Mifflin: Boston-based Houghton Mifflin Company is one of the leading educational publishers in the United States, with more than $1.4 billion in sales. The Company publishes a comprehensive set of educational solutions, ranging from research-based textbook programs to instructional technology to standards-based assessments for elementary and secondary schools and colleges. The Company also publishes an extensive line of reference works and award-winning fiction and nonfiction for adults and young readers. In 2006, Houghton Mifflin merged with Riverdeep, bringing together one of the most respected print publishers with the leader in interactive courseware. With origins dating back to 1832, Houghton Mifflin combines its tradition of excellence with a commitment to innovation. To learn more about Houghton Mifflin, visit www.hmco.com.

About Houghton Mifflin College Division: The Houghton Mifflin College Division publishes textbooks, study guides, online tools and other study-support materials primarily for introductory-level college courses, for students at four-year, community and career colleges and universities.

Greenies invade Second Life; Avatars Shrink to Size of Mice!

Rezzable Productions Ltd. announces that small green aliens have invaded the Second Life virtual world! It’s all kooky, good fun at the grand opening of the Greenies Home in Second Life(SL). This stunning new region is already considered to be one of the most fascinating places on the grid, allowing people to explore, discover and have fun in a 3D, immersive environment.

AGreenies invade Second Life; Avatars Shrink to Size of Mice!vatars arriving at Greenies Home are transformed into mouse-sized scale as they enter the space inhabited by the alien Greenies. Mundane household items, such as a toaster, desk and birdcage take on surreal beauty as visitors fly around them admiring the attention to detail. Beware the seemingly giant cat-who looks hungry for both Greenie and avatar alike! The Greenies Home features a spectacular new sculpture art piece using the latest SL building tool, the sculptie prim.

“This sculptie prim piece is the greatest thing ever rezzed,” comments Jonathan Himoff, Rezzable CEO. “It is an example of the level of creative excellence that can be acheived in Second Life. The Greenies Home is an amazing build – full of surprises, but also an entertaining place to hang-out and make friends.”

SL residents can also become a Greenie themselves. Avatar sets are on sale in the Spaceship allowing customers to directly partake in the action.

The Greenies Home has already gained massive positive support from SL residents and SL Bloggers. Its popularity proves that engaging content and activities can capture strong interest and solid traffic-both in SL and across the web.

“The virtual world is becoming a major thing for many people.” adds Himoff, “We are working to prove that it is possible to generate self-sustaining, long-term revenues. We are operating at a relatively large-scale now and will open the largest continuous public area in SL shortly. Rezzable will preview further areas this month to continue to meet the demand for enjoyable things to do. Greenie is a great start!”

About Rezzable: Rezzable Productions Ltd, is a UK-based company that creates and manages entertainment areas in Second Life. Rezzable is developing what will be the largest public area in SL and will deliver the highest-quality visitor experiences in the metaverse. For more information www.rezzable.com

Ketchum Launches Fashion Interactive 2.0

Ketchum, a leading marketing and corporate communications firm, announced today a new apparel marketing initiative, Fashion Interactive 2.0. Led by fashion marketing innovators Roy Edmondson and Jeff Danzer, this offering provides a unique combination of traditional and nontraditional marketing tools to the apparel business. Taking its cue from Web 2.0, Fashion Interactive 2.0 combines traditional marketing communications with new media tactics that harness the power of social networks, blogging, online relationships, word-of-mouth and experiential marketing.

Ketchum Launches Fashion Interactive 2.0Ketchum Launches Fashion Interactive 2.0Edmondson, senior vice president, Global Brand Marketing Practice, and Danzer, who joins Ketchum to launch this offering as vice president and group manager, apparel, will direct communications campaigns designed to reach and engage today’s digital consumers. Using Ketchum’s newly developed proprietary program that proactively harnesses the power of social networks, such as MySpace and Facebook, the group will provide a completely measurable communications platform that encourages consumers to become brand evangelists as never before.

Fashion Interactive 2.0 also will utilize the powers of the agency’s global resources, including its interactive capabilities and Ketchum and Omnicom Group’s word-of-mouth marketing firm, Zocalo Group. The initiative aligns with the agency’s work with European beauty and fashion clients.

“Roy and Jeff have proven success at enhancing relationships between brands and their target consumers. In the changing media landscape, they will be able to help brands harness the power of interactive media while strategically aligning programs with traditional tactics to create brand ambassadors,” said Barri Rafferty, partner and director, New York.

Edmondson and Danzer possess more than 30 years of combined experience in the fashion industry. Prior to joining Ketchum, Edmondson served as director of global marketing at Levi Strauss and vice president of marketing at Rocawear. Danzer, who was named a “Marketer of the Next Generation” by Brandweek, is best known as the brand architect behind 2(x)ist, founder of PL>Y Underwear (and the inventor of the iBoxer), and the executive responsible for brokering Donald Trump’s Signature dress-shirt and tie deal with Phillips- Van Heusen.

About Ketchum: A communications innovator, Ketchum ranks among the largest global public relations agencies, operating in more than 50 countries. With five global practices — Brand Marketing, Corporate, Healthcare, Food and Nutrition, and Technology — and specialty areas that include Concentric Communications (experiential marketing, events and meetings), Ketchum Entertainment Marketing, Ketchum Global Research, Ketchum Sports Network, Stromberg Consulting (change management and workplace communications) and The Washington Group (lobbying and government relations), Ketchum leverages its marketing and corporate communications expertise to build brands and reputations for clients. For more information on Ketchum, a unit of Omnicom Group Inc., visit http://www.ketchum.com.