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Feeling Old Yet? Incoming College Freshmen Have Always Known Google

Feeling Old Yet? Incoming College Freshmen Have Always Known Google by Frank Holmes

I use Google every day, and yet I still marvel at how amazing a tool it is. Part of this amazement stems from the fact that most of my life was spent in the dark ages before the search giant changed human knowledge forever. I appreciate it in a way 19th-century, transcontinental travelers must have appreciated steam locomotives’ ability to shave days and weeks from their covered-wagon travel time. Except Google is more like a rocket ship than a locomotive.

This year’s incoming college freshmen, on the other hand, have never not known the wonders of Google. To them, all human thought—whether in words, images or videos—has always been easily and instantaneously accessible. They’ve only ever known the rocket ship, never the covered wagon.

This factoid is just one among many that appear on Beloit College’s latest Mindset List.

Published each August since 1998, the Mindset List was initially designed to provide professors with a snapshot of incoming freshmen and help them understand new students’ beliefs and values. It also...


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