Technology is integrated into learning more than ever before from elementary school all the way through college and above.
Conflicting research and opinions leave students and parents of young students with more questions than answers, but in my experience, I’ve found that technology in a learning environment has exponential positives which far outweigh the negatives.
Technology and learning coincide in different ways during a typical school day. Interactive simulations, online assignments, online libraries and Zoom classes are just a few of the different ways internet learning is integrated.
A 2018 study of ed-tech programs demonstrated when technology is used to personalize learning to a student’s individualized pace, it “shows enormous promise in improving learning outcomes.”
Educational tech programs use artificial intelligence to adapt to the specific student it teaches. This benefits the student and the teacher because the student can get information the way they understand in a way a teacher couldn’t possibly have enough time to do for every student.
Not only does technology assist teachers in the classroom but at home as well. During the COVID-19 pandemic quarantines, schools were able to continue teaching because of the ability to hold Zoom classes and give online assignments.
Without the internet, anywhere from three months to almost two years would be spent out of school. At home learning through the internet gives the option for those who struggle with sickness or need flexible learning to continue their education in a way that best suits them.
Schools without access to the internet and all of its resources may fall behind the high tech schools but can still offer great education without it. Technology is fairly new to the educational world, so statistics regarding schools without technology and schools with technology aren’t directly correlated to the recent surge in integrating technology from elementary school and beyond.
A majority of the studies focused on younger children in elementary school, but the same applies for higher learning. Discipline online can help college students to minimize the unhealthy aspects of online learning.
In a recent McGraw Hill study, 3,300 U.S. college students were surveyed on technology in education. Four out of five college students say that technology helps them save time, boost grades and improve their education.
On the other hand, technology has its fair share of cons; moderation is key with almost everything in life. Too much interaction with technology as an infant and child can disrupt neurological development.
According to Brooking.edu, “In adolescence and young adulthood, the presence of technology in learning environments has also been associated with (but has not been shown to be the cause of) negative variables such as attention deficits or hyperactivity, feeling lonely, and lower grades.”
In acknowledging those variables, they only associate with technology in the learning environment. With proper instruction from teachers and discipline from students, those variables are no longer associated with technology in the learning environment.
The promise of an interactive learning experience is worth using and teaching discipline to students about keeping technology use in moderation. Educators who understand the correct way to learn with technology are necessary for optimal learning.
Learning discipline in using moderation online also helps students learn the necessary life skill of using discipline even when motivation is low.
According to edsurge.com, “If a kid is experiencing a high-quality personalized learning environment, they’re going to have more agency, stronger grit and a persevering attitude.”
Personalized learning also teaches younger students to take ownership of their learning rather than blending in with the rest of their peers.