College students have a new reason not to use their cellphones during class.
The Pocket Points app offers a rewards program for students who lock their phones on campus. The app verifies a student’s location through GPS via Wi-Fi and starts sending points to their account. The points can be used to obtain coupons for discounts on food, clothing and more.
“I use my phone during class all the time,” says SLCC student Court Casselman. “But if there’s an incentive [to not use it] then that’s a really great thing to help students learn to focus on the professor rather than on their cellphone.”
Professor Zac Curtis agrees that the app would allow students to be more engaged in classes.
“This is great!” Curtis wrote in an email. “I don’t want to be the professor that forces students to turn off phones when they walk in the room.”
Curtis also recognizes that not all students can afford to turn their phones off, but feels that Pocket Points would help to limit non-essential phone use.
SLCC student Scott Funk says he believes an app like Pocket Points could save future generations of students.
“If [students] get told that they can’t use their iPhone in class and they get rewarded for it, we could save [college education],” he says.
Casselman, however, compares Pocket Points to a similar app for Cinemark theatres and thinks that users would ultimately lose interest.
“Maybe people will use it for a little bit,” he says, “but eventually they’ll just stop caring.”