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Help Or Hindrance? 3 Ways Technology Significantly Impacts Education

Help Or Hindrance? 3 Ways Technology Significantly Impacts Education
Posted By: Emma Sturgis on May 11, 2017

As education adopts more of the latest technology hitting the market, the use of such technologies ultimately changes how students approach the learning process. In certain situations, technology can augment how students learn and grasp the material they are studying. In other situations, technology will perhaps be more detrimental to learning than previously believed. The following are three situations that will certainly impact students one way or the other.

Computer Modeling
With the advent of computer modeling and animation tools, much of what was difficult to present in a classroom setting in the past has been reduced to pressing a few buttons. From graphing complicated mathematical formulas to observing the collective range of physical forces acting on a graphically animated body, the conceptual basis for many hard to model phenomena can be played out on a standard computer monitor for the entire class. This is especially beneficial when it comes to making real applications of core STEM subjects available to younger grade levels. The use of such technological advancements also means that the speed at which many of these concepts can be conveyed has also increased. Although it is easy to reduce the learning process to a computer generated tutorial of animated concepts in action, it is potentially harmful to students when they are not given the opportunity to recreate many of these modeling situations with pen and paper too. Having the ability to plan out ideas the old fashioned way has its merits and teaches its own set of skills. Since the use of cutting edge technology is not always available in all applications, no student should be without these less tech-driven experiences that help to compensate in such situations.

Replacing Books With Electronic Textbooks
With the use of a tablet, a student can have instant access to every textbook they need in every subject.

While having to only keep track of a tablet does not nearly take as much responsibility as keeping track of a back-pack full of books, it, nevertheless, ensures that a student is less likely to be stuck without the proper materials during classroom instruction. Having electronic versions of textbooks also gives the student the opportunity to make and store notes along with their reading material for easy access. This keeps their notes and reading assignments in context with each other all from a central source. Although, a potential downside to this use of technology in a learning setting is that some critics may feel it makes students less organized in situations where technology is not providing them with easy methods of organization.

Distance Learning: The Wave Of The Now
With the advent of the Internet, the ability to engage students in distance learning has become a whole new area of modern education that is changing the face of how learning is done. More and more parents desire to homeschool their children and the home computer has made this a positive reality for many parents who want more hands on experience with their child's education. Online homeschool is providing many parents with the perfect opportunity to educate their children in a setting that works best for them. This may be due to sports, extracurricular activities, travels, or family situations.

Technology has long been thought as the tool which drives innovation. In the area of education, it is easy to see that technology opens doors that older methods of education simply could not quite outpace. Technology allows a student a new perspective on old ideas without sacrificing access to older methods of approaching problems before technology came along to make these problems easier to view and solve. In essence, technology is the fruit of learning that gives something back to the learning process.
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