Yet Another Odd Category of YouTube Videos

Last week I wrote about how popular videos of people pressure washing their houses have become, with some of the videos having over one million views!

Well I just came across another category of popular YouTube videos that is just as strange, if not more so.

The category: study-with-me videos.

And before you try and guess exactly what that means, I’ll explain. These are videos of people studying. Here’s an example of one such video:

The video is simply different camera angles of watching this young woman studying, with different music playing. The 53-minute video has been viewed nearly 500,000 times.

Another session with this same woman is nearly two and a half hours long, and has been watched over 900,000 times! This video also has music and shows how the woman uses the Pomodoro time management technique:

The article notes that some students may feel isolated when they’re up late studying. Having a video on in the background can feel like having a study buddy.

Mitchell Nathan, professor of educational psychology and learning sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, says to “Think of it like parallel play. This is parallel studying: You’re ignoring each other, but that’s still much more preferable than doing it all by yourself.”

Given the number of views that some of these study-with-me videos receive, it’s no surprise that some of them have learned how to monetize their YouTube channel, often through sponsorship deals.

It’s important to note that these videos are not tutorials; often times the person who recorded the video says nothing. But besides offering the study-with-me videos, some of the video celebrities also offer advice on other topics.

Jade Bowler, a study tube star from England known online as UnJaded Jade, has 187,000 subscribers to her YouTube channel. Here is one of her videos of her 5am school morning routine; the video has over 990,000 views:

17-year-old Seo Jung, from Camas, Wash., is known on YouTube as tbhstudying, and has  139,000 subscribers. Here is one of her videos offering advice on how to take notes; the video has over 450,000 views.

Thomas Frank, in addition to study videos, also makes short videos on improving productivity, setting goals and managing student debt. He currently has one million subscribers to his YouTube channel. One of his videos, How to Remember What You Study, has over two million views:

And Jasmine Shao, a 16-year-old from the Bay Area, has a channel called Studyquill. Jasmine has over 275,000 subscribers, and this video of her explaining how to organize your binder, has over 340,000 views:

I don’t know what to make of these videos. I’ think I’m of the same mindset as one of the commenters who noted that she had just spent two and a half hours watching another person study, while doing no studying of her own. In such a case, it seems like the video is a complete waste of time.

But in other situations, the videos may be just what is needed to learn some tricks of the trade regarding effective study habits or to simply have a “virtual” study buddy.

So while I personally do not think I would ever watch someone else study, there apparently is a market for it, so kudos to those who have created such videos, and best of luck to those who are using such videos to improve their studying habits.

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