Biggest Changes that Technology Brought in Education
What is required for our youth to be educated to the highest academic standard? Dozens of teachers, thousands of dollars and more than a decade of studying. Also, we can’t leave out the impact and use of technology. The idea of technology in education has generated some controversy from its very appearance. People use technology as a powerful tool for learning, from the earliest grades in primary school right to graduate school and beyond. The downside is that it makes cheating easier, as well as allowing access to inappropriate content.
Personal computing and internet have influenced and changed the world greatly. Modern students grew up with them and are accustomed to using them. It’s an educational tool, and we shouldn’t cheapen its impact by denying it. However, can we identify the effects of modern technology on education? Let’s examine this question closer.
Immense Research Possibilities
When we need to find something out, what do we do? Children today would rather ask Wikipedia than try to find the answer in books or ask someone with expertise. Until 15 years ago, people had to put more effort in order to get the information they needed. Today, nearly every piece of information is just a few taps away, making the increase of knowledge a simple child’s play. Some say that the respect for intellectuals will be in decline because of this, but it seems unlikely. The first step to deeper understanding of things and critical analysis lies in knowing how to search for something.
If you wanted to collaborate with someone on a project, besides taking a trip and spending time together working, there weren’t many communication channels available (telephone and mail). However, if you wanted to do some serious work, these ways weren’t nearly enough. Today, collaboration is basically a real-time event. It has increased productivity and has a host of other benefits that young students usually recognize upon accomplishing their first project in that environment. If you aren’t comfortable working while “on display” (e.g. via Skype), there are free products like Google Docs that have become a more widespread solution, revamping the idea of team projects. Students can also create their own online communities and share commerce notes for better and more productive studying. Having someone more experienced and professional to help you at any time is invaluable for one’s education and self-confidence.
With the “help” of modern technology, cheating has never been easier. For example, you’re allowed to use a graphing calculator for the midterm test, but don’t know all the formulas. Write a program on the calculator that contains everything you need, and you will pass without the risk of getting caught. Or just photograph your homework with your smartphone, send it to your friends and they would be able to copy it on their way to school. This is one of the negative effects that technology has on education, but everything has a cost. Because of this, many schools are pushing more grade-important tests that are hard to cheat on.
People today have much shorter attention span due to digital technology use. So, are we making a mistake by substituting books with digital screens? The solution can be found in the teachers. Capable teachers can employ technology as a valuable tool, and exclude the use which produces negative effects.
Technology has changed our world, and it continues to do so. The implications of its use for our children’s education are yet to be completely understood. Are there ways to employ it intelligently to reap the rewards, but avoid all the potential pitfalls? Yes, it is possible. It has to be, because the timeless goals of education will always be respected.