When you talk about the impact of digital technologies on academic achievements, it is important to note that it is not a question of whether the difference comes from the use of technologies but also on how the technologies were used. The advantages of the use of technologies in a learning environment are better felt if it aligns with the learning process—otherwise, it may constitute a distraction.
Again, a student can obtain higher benefits from new technologies if the student develops life-long learning attitudes or higher skill levels. The quest to transform the education system didn’t state today. Freinet has his ideas of how the school teaching and learning system can be transformed albeit not everyone believed in his methods. Computers have gained higher acceptance than Freinet’s method, hence, the higher recorded positive impacts on learning.
The Problem With Traditional Education
The quality of education is affected by the ease of the learners to access information. In the traditional education setting, information is not readily available to the learners. Learners had to depend on schools, libraries, and teachers for information. Prior to the digital era, the majority of people lacked access to information. Information was also expensive to get.
As the society grew, people began to have the urge to get information as it happened. The traditional education system could not meet this demand. Information reaching traditional education settings are usually a few days late.
The coming of digital technology has changed the way we learn. It hads opened up more learning avenues that would never have been possible if we were to rely solely on traditional education. Not only has education expanded to more rural areas of the world, but Information Communication Technology (ICT) is also almost becoming an integral part of our lives.
Improving Interaction Between Teachers And Students
There are numerous ways in which digital technology has improved learning and one of them is through improving communication and interaction between teachers and students and among students. If we recall, most of the work done by Celestin Freinet during his life was centered on improving group activities among students. Today many students have created groups and forums where they interact with each other to find solutions to problems affecting them.
Computer-administered programs like 3D simulations are also used in different faculties like in the field of medicine to give students an insight into what real life experience in their field looks like. Such learning approaches have produced remarkable results in the last few decades. Studies have shown that such learning tools prepare students to be more reactive in real life situations.
The Problem Of Digital Technologies In Classrooms
It is true that technology is changing the way that students learn but many educators believe that it is not all for the better. There have been a number of surveys that present results in which digital technologies in the classroom is seen as a distraction.
One of such surveys was undertaken by the Washington Post in 2013. According to the teacher survey, as much as ninety per cent of teachers believe that digital technologies have created a distracted generation that can only pay attention for a brief period of time. Another sixty per cent believe it has made face-to-face communication and writing difficult.
Another way to look at this distraction is the increased tendency of students to use classroom computers for non-educational purposes like watching videos, shopping, or sending emails. In cases where students are monitored or Internet access is restricted, students often use their laptops for playing offline games. The proliferation of digital technology has also made malpractice easier.
Ways Of Improving The Impact Of Technological Tools On Learning
Unlike the traditional learning in which there is a limited number of ways through which information can be represented, the impact of technologies on learning can be improved by incorporating different media like text, animations, sound, graphics, and videos.
Furthermore, we cannot rule out the fact that not every student is comfortable with the class environment. Digital technologies can make it possible for students to learn from any location where they feel most comfortable. In such instances where students learn outside the classrooms, online tutors can work with them to provide clarifications where they are confused.