This photo combo shows, from left, entertainer Justin Bieber, an iPhone, and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. This year's Beloit College Mindset List, a nonscientific compilation, is meant to remind teachers that college freshmen, born mostly in 1994, see the world in a much different way. (AP Photo)
Wednesday was the first day of classes at the University of Tennessee and more than 4200 freshmen headed to class. Meanwhile, Beloit College has already done some homework on the class of 2016.
First up on the Mindset List: most freshmen don't remember when suitcases were carried:
"I see more people rolling those sideways suitecases more often now then carrying them, or rolling them backwards," said Max Gavin, a freshman.
And how about the tan M&Ms? No, for freshmen, there's always been blue.
"Yeah, I don't remember a light brown one," said William Harvell, a freshman.
The term "Star Wars" brings up the movies.
"Harrison Ford and a Wookie. And space. And fighting with light-sabers, I guess," said Camille Lane, a freshman.
When asked if she'd ever heard Star Wars referred to as a defense strategy:
"No. I don't think so, nope," said Lane.
And why do we click on an image of a disc when we "save" files?
"I guess it's supposed to be like a Floppy Disc? So maybe that has something to do with it. But we don't use those anymore. Maybe that has something to do with it?" Lane said.
The list reminds us that the class of 2016 doesn't really have a use for radios - it's all about MP3s and iPods - and television everywhere but without an actual TV.
"Ever since I've been using Netflix, I've been stuck on that," said Gavin.
Yes, the class of 2016 sees the world in a much different way - and UT's Teaching and Learning Center, which trains professors, is conscious of that.
"Well, they've got to use technology. And that's a little difficult for some of us that grew up with VHS and MTV, to handle all of the technologies, but that's really where students are," said Dr. Taimi Olsen, associate director of the Tennessee Teaching and Learning Center.
She said that means everything from lectures on online, to social media and iPads in the classroom.