Many college students say they procrastinate because they do their best work under pressure. And there's usually no way to prove that they're wrong. But now that more college students are logging onto a computer to do their assignments, data scientists can sometimes measure what the actual cost of procrastination is. In one recent data-mining analysis, researchers from an education technology company found that almost one third of the students they studied waited until the day before the due date to start their chemistry homework (typically weekly problem sets). And these students scored 3 percentage points lower, on average, than their classmates. In other words, if the class average was 88, the procrastinators scored 85. more

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