A study has revealed that just two hours a day is spent using the web to revise or study, with the rest of their time online spent on social media, shopping and playing video games.
And of the 1,000 students polled, 57 per cent admitted they use the internet more for entertainment purposes than they do for studying.
Commissioned by broadband provider Hyperoptic, the study found 14 hours a week are spent on social media, 11 hours streaming TV shows and six hours on gaming.
While three hours a week are spent on video chats such as Skype or FaceTime, another four hours online shopping and even two hours watching ‘adult entertainment’.
Charles Davies, MD ISP of Hyperoptic said: “Students are renowned for spending a lot of time online – but it’s clear from the study it can be difficult to get work done when there are so many distractions.
“Students rely on being connected for everything from staying in touch with friends, keeping up with the latest news, shopping and of course completing university work.”
“It’s interesting to see how the total time per week is split between entertainment and working.
“Either way, this amount of usage requires top quality and super-fast connectivity in order to stay on top of studies and downtime.”
The study also found nearly half think students will no longer need textbooks in the next five years as all resources will be online.
Currently, 42 per cent said the majority of their university work requires them to use the internet.
And 69 per cent admitted they rely on the web daily, with two thirds saying they would ‘struggle’ without access to it.
But more than half of students said they get easily distracted while studying online and often find themselves not actually getting much done.
This has led to two in five going to the library to avoid interruptions and almost a quarter have even tried to block social media accounts and websites, in order to get on with their studies.
It takes on average of 51 minutes before students get distracted, and more than a third blame social media while a sixth said YouTube was responsible.
It also emerged a huge 88 per cent said broadband was a ‘priority’ when moving into student housing, due to three in five wanting to watch Netflix.
On average, students waited just over one week for the internet to be installed after moving in.
Phones were found to be the most popular device used by students to access the internet, followed by laptops and tablets.
While only 15 per cent of those polled via OnePoll ‘often’ use university computers to go online.
But in the next five years, more than an eighth of students think they will work on an iPad or tablet rather than a computer or laptop.
And a further 44 per cent predict films will only be watched via streaming instead of on DVDs or Blu-ray.
Charles Davies added: “Technology and how we use it in our daily lives is growing at pace – students predict this will go even further with online resources replacing study books.
“The research gives us an insight into the demands of future generations – always online, multi device households and heavy consumers of streamed video and gaming content.
“This all demonstrates the critical need for fast reliable full-fibre broadband, which can be accessed by multiple users and devices without any slow down or loss of connection at peak times.”
How students use their internet over a week:
Social media – 14 hours 36 minutes
Streaming videos e.g. Netflix – 10 hours 55 minutes
Video games – 6 hours and 16 minutes
Shopping online – 3 hours 44 minutes
Video chatting e.g. Facetime – 3 hours 14 minutes
Watching ‘adult’ entertainment – 2 hours 6 minutes
University work – 13 hours and 56 minutes
Total – 54 hours and 47 minutes