Education and Technology: Good vs. Bad?
By: Shelby Scott, Rosalie Olsen, Kelly Samz,, and Ethan Webber
New digital tools and technologies are being applied to educational learning each and every day. In 1963, The Vocational Education Act funded the usage of technology in schools. From then on, technology has only improved and has been incorporated more and more into school settings. As COVID-19 spread throughout the world, school settings were impacted forever. Online learning has transformed the lives of many students and there has been a higher demand for technology since then. Technology in education has the ability to enhance learning processes and broaden access to academic resources for students and teachers. Distance learning was a huge outcome of the pandemic and it has transformed the need for technology in home settings and not just educational buildings. Furthermore, with all of the change from the pandemic, it has sparked opposing sides to whether or not technology is beneficial or harmful in education. Overall, there are so many intricate connections between technology and the education system. A huge controversy stands on if technology is more beneficial in education or more harmful.
Using technology in education has a lot of good effects. One of the biggest effects is that it helped learning become more accessible. During the pandemic, when everyone had to isolate themselves from the world, distance learning became the new norm. Being able to learn on an online platform became accessible to everyone, even those that were from a low income household. Those that were from a low income household were given a laptop temporarily so they would be able to complete their school work. In doing all of this, it pushed more responsibilities on to the students. They were held responsible for their work and if they were caught cheating, there would be consequences. When everyone was able to go back to in-pearson schooling, blended learning became the new norm. This blended online instruction and in-person instruction, thus creating a new environment that everyone had to get used to again. Incorporating technology can be very helpful for students with disabilities, as it can provide a way for those students to access their courses more easily. There are many different ways that platforms online can be more accessible, such as adding video captions, descriptions of video and images, for people with mobility issues, give them an aid to help them. While the ADA does “prohibit the exclusion of otherwise qualified students to equal education and access,” some teachers, schools, and even some online platforms are not as accessible as they can be. There are some very simple tools that teachers and platforms can add to their online courses to make it more accessible, proving the idea of technology incorporation in education.
Our research is centered around looking to find if technology in education has a good effect on student learning. The main reason why technology was brought into the classroom was to decrease the education gap and help underserved students. Although, technology almost did the opposite. Kids in low-funded school districts have just fallen through the cracks more. A lot of the underfunded school districts happen to be in minority group communities. Even when supplied with laptops and tablets, many students don’t have the infrastructure to get the benefits of technology. A big challenge many underserved students face is having the support at home to use this technology. Not all students know where they are staying for the night, and finding applicable internet is not their biggest concern. Other downsides of technology in the classroom would be as students are less challenged. Now as we shift away from a traditional style of learning it’s easier for students to cheat or misuse the many resources they have at their accessibility. While technology does promote collaboration it does take away from individual things. While it is good to learn how to work in a group it’s also just as important to learn how to work alone.
Technology must be applied with careful consideration to maximize its benefits and minimize the potential for harmful distractions. Despite the many viewpoints, technology is beneficial in education, with blended and distance learning, to a certain extent. Technology allows students and teachers to connect through many levels while teaching responsibility in life skills. Although there are many benefits to technology, over usage of technology in the wrong way can be detrimental to learning processes. A clear compromise should be outlined when schools use technology and all factors should be considered. Using technology is very beneficial in education, as long as it is in moderation.
“TECHNOLOGY IN THE CLASSROOM.” Age [Melbourne, Australia], 14 Aug. 2002, p. 11.
Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A286817215/OVIC?u=hpu_main&sid=bookmark-OVIC&xid=594254e2. Accessed 3 Nov. 2022.
Cecilia Leung with Fairfax Media wrote about Technology in the Classroom. As of the21st century, the US spends roughly $13.2 billion to fund school districts with technology a year. Technology allows students and teachers to remain connected, no matter their distance apart. Connection from home to the classroom is made in a matter of seconds, and days lost because external factors can be practically eliminated. Even though, on paper, this is easy, it requires teachers and students to learn and adjust to new technology. Parents can now easily contact teachers and vice versa. This new technology allows teachers to monitor students as they work to help prevent cheating and dishonesty. As new technology is implemented, it requires a learning period for everyone involved. Technology allows teachers to view students’ past records and mark them accordingly.
Cecilia Leung, a well-experienced content director, has a history of working in the broadcast media industry. She is skilled in programming, sales, acquisitions, management, media productions, and operations. Working for companies such as Paramount as a Senior Director, ViacomCBS Networks as a director and digital content distribution, and LYNK global. Cecilia has a very well rounded resume making her a credible source.
“How Has Technology Changed Education?” Purdue University Online, Purdue University West
Lafayette Main Campus, https://online.purdue.edu/blog/education/how-has-technology-changed-education.
The article argued technology in the classroom has changed the way one learns. Before technology was so prevalent in classrooms, there was a bigger focus on individual learning. In today’s classrooms, technology calls for the class to communicate and gives us the ability to work collaboratively at once. Technology allows for education to be greatly explainsive for all. It provides for more education to be accessible but the quality of that education didn’t reach the intended target. Technology in education was designed to help the underserved. Technology did help the education system overall, but it didn’t really reach its intended target group. Purdue’s writing allowed us to refocus our research onto the way technology in education has impacted certain minority groups. Towards the end of the article the writers mention the differences of learning styles technology in education provides. With technology in the class, students can be more creative, but it can also cause students to be less disciplined. With all of the resources technology gives students access to it can make it easier for them to cheat.
Purdue University Online is a credible and reliable academic source. Purdue University Online was established in 2018 as a branch of Purdue University located in West Lafayette Indiana. One can find Purdue a credible source with well-respected authors in their field of study.
Gale Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection “Technology and Education” Gale, part of
Cengage Group, 2020
The article, “Technology and Education” by the Gale Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection, offers a profound insight into the extensive pros and cons of the progressing integration of technology into education. The first paragraph delves into the depths of the current extent that technology has been introduced into the classroom. The internet and computers are being further utilized at an exponential rate, and although this yields great educational benefits for all of those who have access, it is a major problem for those who are not fortunate enough to have these resources available. This creates a larger difference in the availability of quality education and makes it dependent on finances. The second paragraph goes into the increasing availability of online courses, and its consequences on education. Undoubtedly, there are vast benefits to this increasing availability such as providing education remotely in such circumstances as the pandemic. However, studies show that the testing proficiency of the kids in a purely online environment is far less than those who participated in a mixed or traditional environment. Finally, the third paragraph talks of the countless possibilities opened up by technology for the disabled. Text-to-speech offers new avenues of learning for the visually impaired and closed captioning as well as adjustable audio levels can aid the deaf or auditorily deficient. However, these resources are greatly expensive and not accessible to all communities.
The Gale Opposing Viewpoints Collection is a university-approved resource for students of High Point University. It contains numerous academic works that are utilized constantly as class material.
Gornitsky, Marcelle. “Distance education: accessibility for students with disabilities.” Distance
Learning, vol. 8, no. 3, Aug. 2011, pp. 47+. Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A284016056/OVIC?u=hpu_main&sid=bookmark-OVIC&xid=e62526b7. Accessed 26 Oct. 2022.
In “Distance education: accessibility for students with disabilities” Marcelle
Gornitsky outlines and explains how different disabilities can be accommodated in the ‘classroom’ during distance learning. While distance education and distance learning can provide great opportunities and access, they can also provide barriers to students with disabilities, many of which take online courses to provide some flexibility and convenience to their lives. The ADA, Americans Disabilities Act, “prohibits the exclusion of otherwise qualified students to equal education and access,” but many online courses, tools, and documents are not set up to support people with disabilities and there are laws that all instructors should be aware of so that their courses can be accessible. In addition to the ADA, there is the Rehabilitation Act, specifically section 504. This calls for the inclusion of all students that have disabilities and for them to have reasonable accommodations. Different disabilities have different needs for accommodations, such as the hearing impaired needing captions, and the vision impaired needing screen magnifiers, screen readers, or alternate text for images. The physically impaired might need a physical aid for navigation and people with cognitive disabilities might need different learning structures and/or styles. To help students, instructors could change the format of content and how it is delivered. Different platforms have various accessibility checks and powerpoints should also be accessible. This can be achieved by text transcripts for videos and using a tool like the virtual 508 Accessible Wizard. Collaboration tools, such as synchronous chat sessions, can also pose a problem for the disabled, and there are different platforms that can help with this. Accessibility has gotten better over the last few years, but there will always be more that people can do to provide accessible learning to all, especially in this online era.
Gale In Context, Opposing Viewpoints is approved by High Point University as a credible resource. Students can use this as a resource to research more on a topic.