Essay topics: A recent survey of 250 adults between 30-45 showed an association between the number of hours adults spend online each day and self reporting of symptoms commonly associated with depression. The survey found that adults who spend 30 hours or more online each week were twice as likely as others to report that they “frequently” had trouble concentrating. Of adults who reported spending more than 30 hours per week online, 20% also reported that they had felt “sad, down or blue” at least three times within last month.
These results suggest that spending too much time online is linked to depression and people who want to improve their well-being should strictly limit the time they spend online.
Write a response in which you discuss what questions would need to be answered in order to decide whether the recommendation and the argument on which it is based are reasonable. Be sure to explain how the answers to these questions would help to evaluate the recommendation.
The argument states that a survey of 250 adults between the ages of 30 and 45 showed that the number of hours they spend online and self-reporting of symptoms is associated with depression. There are number of questions that need to be answered so that the result can be proved to be true.
The argument states that the result was found from a survey. However it is not mentioned in the argument any specifics about the survey. There are some questions which need to be answered. Who did the survey? Is the source creditable? Even if this was mentioned in the argument, if the people who were asked the questions did not reply honestly, then the argument would fall apart. So we cannot prove the result to be true on basis of the survey.
The survey says that adults who spend 30 hours or more online each week were twice as likely to report that they frequently had trouble concentrating. How much does frequent mean? Frequent is very vague term and cannot be linked to depression. Many people have trouble concentrating. But it may be because they are distracted and like to spend time online and not because they cannot concentrate. Trouble concentrating has nothing to do with depression anyhow. If a person has problem concentrating, it does not mean that he is depressed.
Out of the adults who said that they spend more than 30 hours per week online, 20 percent also reported that they felt sad at least three times within the past month. It is normal for people to feel sad. Everyone has their happy as well as sad moments. It does not mean that a person is depressed if he feels sad. If the person feels sad for say fifteen days in a month we may conclude that the person has depression but the argument states at least three times, so we cannot say if the person is depressed or not. The argument says that people who want to improve their well-being should limit the time they spend online. However, it is possible that people get refreshed after they go online. Also it is possible that out of the people surveyed, some may be spending time online for work related study. So the time they spend online is not for leisure. If this is true then it could change the result of the survey.
The argument has a lot of questions that need to be answered so the result is true. Had the argument stated who has taken the survey, the argument would have been more convincing.
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