There are many benefits of using technology in the classroom, and its use gets nearly universal acclaim from educators. According to the study Education Technology Use in School, from Gallup and the non-profit NewSchools Venture Fund, more than eight in 10 teachers (81%), principals (88%) and administrators (92%) agree that they see “great value in using digital learning tools in the classroom.” Even higher numbers of teachers, principals and administrators see great value in using tech tools in the future.
The benefits of using technology in the classroom isn’t merely anecdotal. An analysis published in Review of Educational Research found that classroom technology led to statistically significant performance improvements in English language arts (ELA), writing and middle school science (though science scores improved more for boys than for girls). Also, students from low-income backgrounds and homes where English is a second language saw improvement in scores across a variety of subjects. In some cases, these students improved test scores in writing more than their better-off peers.
The benefits of using technology in the classroom are many, and are significant. Those benefits include the following six:
- Better Access to Learning
No longer does the size of the school dictate the amount of resources available to its students. Regardless of where a school is located, how big it is, and how well funded it is, a world of knowledge is available to nearly every child (and teacher’s) fingertips. As business technology review site TrustRadius puts it, “With information at the tips of our fingers, learning is now boundless.” Tech-savvy teachers can even use technology to present ideas beyond the chalkboard or written page, such as by introducing activity models, and interactive controls for students.
- Increased Teacher Collaboration
Technology lets teachers collaborate and share ideas and lesson plans online. There is a vast and vibrant global teacher community, giving proactive educators many opportunities to tap into new ideas and strategies, and to provide students with additional resources. According to the website Schoology Exchange, one of many collaboration sites for teachers, “The beauty of collaboration is not only the ability to tap into various perspectives and ideas, but also to share responsibility for our students’ learning. The more people invested in a student’s education, the better the chance that student has to be successful.”
- Improved Parental Involvement
Most guardians today have extremely busy schedules and may not have the time to assist their children with homework, or come to class for parent-teacher conferences. With technology tools, however, parents may be able to meet with teachers via web conferencing, or check their child’s attendance, assignments and grades through web portals like PowerSchool.
Technology can be pricey, but it can also open the door to educational experiences that would otherwise be impossible, or cost significantly more money. For example, virtual field trips and virtual labs let students explore new frontiers without leaving their desks, and electronic documents, emails, electronic textbooks and other online resources lets schools save money on books, paper, printing and more—while still providing students with enriching educational resources.
- Students are More Engaged
According to the Center for Teaching and Learning, “Research has demonstrated that engaging students in the learning process increases their attention and focus, motivates them to practice higher-level critical thinking skills, and promotes meaningful learning experiences.” Fortunately, technology can play a major role in providing new and playful ways to learn. For example, videos or live streaming content can offer students a new perspective, and make a concept or subject easier to understand. These videos are often more entertaining and engrossing than classroom instruction. Per the Education Technology Use in School survey, more than half of all students say that technology makes school more interesting, 42% of students would like to use technology more often at school, and only 8% said they would like to use technology less.
- More Personalized Learning
Customized, personalized learning is critical to student success. In fact, according to a survey conducted by the Center for Digital Education (CDE), personalized learning is the No. 1 educational technology priority around the country, including digital curriculum in classrooms, computing devices in classroom, and professional development in personalized learning practices. The Education Technology Use in School survey reports that most teachers (57%), principals (65%) and administrators (73%) think digital learning tools are more effective than non-digital tools for personalizing instruction.
Getting the Benefits of Using Technology in the Classroom with Single Path
While technology can improve learning, students need access to that technology regardless of income levels and other factors. At Single Path, we work with schools and school districts across the country to ensure they can take advantage of all the benefits of using technology in the classroom. Our educational consulting services help schools make smart technology choices, and implement them effectively. We help provide technology that engages students, and puts schools on a better path to forging students’ futures.
Contact us to learn more about enhancing your school’s performance with technology.