I remember back when I started university (circa 1995... yes, it really was 16 years ago....) and I was given my first major writing assignment. I was instructed to find at least four supporting documents (read: BOOKS) for the term paper I was writing. Sounds straight-forward enough, right?
The other stipulation was that I was NOT to use the Internet for research, and I most certainly was not to reference any websites in my paper.
But, oh, how the times have changed!
My husband is taking some classes at the university right now, hoping to work his way up to a Masters degree some time in the next few years. Given that he works full time during the day, he attends one class in the evening and is taking the other one online.
And it's for the online course that he is required to submit a paper in which the subject matter is to be supported by no less than five websites.
Once upon a time, he would have spent hours in the campus libraries, voraciously searching for something, ANYTHING, that could remotely support his writing..... but not anymore! Now he can just sit in the comfort of our living room, laptop on lap, coffee in hand, and complete all his research.
(If I was a lesser person, I'd be a little bitter toward today's students who, I'm sure, are not lugging home 30lbs worth of library books every night...... you know, like I was.......)