Today a couple of people I respect highly passed along an article called Toughest college test: No cell phones, no Facebook. Such articles always make me wonder though, what the professors true purpose was and whether it was achieved? What was the educational objective?
I truly hope the professor issued the unwired challenge AND THEN passed along some interesting and challenging activities for the students to do during their hiatus from the wired world. I hope students were involved in exciting learning opportunities they might have otherwise overlooked. Because if all the professor did was say, you cannot use wired devices period, leaving the students with nothing more than that challenge I can guess the true results. Undoubtedly today's college students became even more convinced that the non-wired world is a boring wasteland and those who live in a non-wired world are antiquarians.
If there are valid reasons to unplug from the wired world make clear what those reasons are and engage the learners. If all you want to do is show them you can unplug and they cannot you have just shown them once again that you do not understand their world and you never will, and you therefore are really not worth their time.