Technology is undoubtedly changing the way we teach and learn. It started with desktops and interactive whiteboards – now we are seeing an influx of smart devices and their various apps and programmes. Better internet and connectivity has also contributed to a huge change in school environments. The consequences of all of these changes have been both positive and negative. While both sides of the coin are often discussed on separate forums; if you’re looking to upgrade the technology in your school, it’s worth comparing both sides as you form your plan. It’s always essential to keep in mind any potential drawbacks to integrating something new into an environment, but it’s possible to find that the advantages make it well worth it.
Easy access to information – Books still have their place in the classroom, but students and schools can both save a lot of money and space now that information can be so easily accessed on the internet and online school resources. Students in particular don’t have the burden of heavy or bulky backpacks because of textbooks.
Independent learning – Students have always been able to study outside of the classroom, but this is easier than ever now. Mobile technology means that learning has no restrictions when it comes to place or time. With the intimate digital knowledge that has become innate in the current generation of students, technology will help them take their learning to the next level.
New ways to learn – Learning isn’t limited to note making and perusing textbooks any more. Students can enjoy a diverse range of material that is possible entirely because of technology. Images, videos, graphics, websites; these can all contribute to renewing students’ interest in their respective subjects.
Shallow studying – Smart devices and computers make it so easy to find answers that it takes almost no effort. This shortcut method of studying is tempting for a lot of young pupils but it can create a sort of study lethargy. Students can develop poor study habits like not fact-checking or not looking into their sources, which could potentially lead to miseducation.
Forgetting the basics – There are many methods of study that are just as relevant now as they were twenty years ago, but students are becoming so accustomed to using computers for every aspect of their studying that they’re forgetting these older and sometimes more effective methods. For instance, some students are now finding themselves confused by libraries.
Beware the web – As fantastic a resource as the internet is, it’s well documented in having an underbelly that ranges from unproductive to downright strange, even with parental controls on. Not everything that students find on the internet will be conducive to their studies, so it’s important to properly guide them at school and encourage their parents to guide them at home.
Technology now plays an integral role in education. As long as students’ computer usage and study is guided in and out of school, the long term benefits of having access to technology are well worth integrating it into the learning process. With such easy access to a wealth of information – and so many new ways to digest said information – the potential for more efficient learning is limitless as long as it is accompanied by a steady hand.