Society Magazine

University of Life – More Freshers Can Work Their Phone Than the Washing Machine

Posted on the 27 September 2012 by 72point @72hub

Students will head off to university or college with a greater knowledge of their phone than of a washing machine, research has found. While 78% of freshers will have fully got to grips with their phone (conduct updates, understand all features, etc), only 77% will be able to get their clothes cleaned without ruining their whites or destroying their delicates.

Indeed, only 70% of students would be able to boil an egg, while the same amount would be able to upload images to their computer or a social networking site.

Staggeringly, more students could even set up their laptop or video games console independently than vacuum their room.

The findings were revealed in a survey of 934 parents by UK supermarket chain Sainsbury’s, looking at the lifestyle of their 18-25 year old children.

Their spokesperson commented:

“Despite feeling like fully fledged adults, the reality is that a whole host of students heading off to college this month need a crash course as to how to set themselves up for their new lives.

“Teenagers are more than capable of looking after themselves but the vast majority don’t even own a saucepan!

“With the right leaving home equipment and some pointers from mom and dad, life in student digs will be much more comfortable”.

The study shows many students will go hungry during their first term, as 48% are currently unable to make a simple dish such as spaghetti bolognese, while a third are bemused by baking a potato.

However they won’t be far from technology, as 63% can work wifi, 51% can set-up home broadband and 45% can use a satnav.

Even tasks such as setting up a direct debit (44%) and paying a bill (35%) can confuse some students.

There are, shockingly, still many household gadgets 18-year-olds won’t have got to grips with including the iron (22%), kettle (17%) and toaster (18%).

Despite there being a multitude of tasks the average students aren’t confident at, they are surpassing older generations with their technological and financial skills, including saving money, installing apps on a smart phone, downloading movies and videos and editing photos – perhaps now deemed by young people more vital to the modern age than household chores.

The Sainsbury’s spokeswomen continues:

“The thing to remember is that while many students or 18-year-olds might not be pros at carrying out basic household tasks, they are incredibly competent at using gadgets and technology, and have also become really savvy with money.

“Times have changed, and although household tasks may not be the priority for youngsters today, they are proficient at doing many other things, and these skills will carry them through their university years and beyond.”.


Boil an egg   30%

Make toast   18%

Make a spaghetti Bolognese   48%

Cook a jacket potato   30%

Make a bed   23%

Iron a shirt   42%

Do a white wash   44%

Dust a room   31%

Fold clothes neatly   35%

Vacuum a room   35%

Sew on a button   53%

Use a tumble dryer   50%

Know which cleaning products to buy   62%

Set up a DVD player   33%

Set up a direct debit   44%

Pay a bill   35%

Manage their mobile   22%

Work a washing machine         23%

Set up wifi   37%

Set up broadband   49%

Set up a sat-nav      55%

Set up laptop   32%

Set up a website   75%

Edit photos on phone   46%

Upload photos   31%

Download movies/videos   34%

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