I ntroduction: In the presentation I will present evidence from several studies that illustrates critical elements associated with the daunting task of implementing technology in the classroom so that it have a positive impact on student achievement. No longer is it necessary for educators to question technology’s role in our world today. Rather, technology’s foothold on our globe is so evident that educational institutions must decide how they will implement technology rather than if they are going to implement technology. Moreover, it is important that, if implemented correctly with specific objectives, technology can have a very positive role in regards to student achievement. In order to do this, one must understand the population of current students and lay out specific plans for the technology and seek opportunities in technology that students already have.
The fact that technology correlates to increased student achievement is clear. Students involved in courses that used computers for assessment scored 14% higher. Students reported higher levels of appreciation for the courses involving technology. Students learned more in less time in courses that used technology.
If educational administration does not feel technology does not affect student achievement, they should ask what they are testing. According to Hooft (2007) Digital, connected technology is important in our daily lives, whether it is a teenager accessing her social network on MySpace or adults using communications tools as part of their jobs. Most of us cannot imagine a world without computers or the Internet, yet many schools are still minimizing the role of technology and the skills of networking and collaboration. Barnes, Marateo, and Ferris (2007) Educators should continue to find ways to exploit the skills students develop outside of class without accommodating the habits of instant gratification and shallow thinking. To be human is to learn, and we learn from good teachers. Russell Ackoff has often noted that the current education system does not teach students how to learn (Day 2007 ). Today’s digital and computer technologies allow us to remedy this by giving us the tools to teach Net Geners not just what to learn but how to learn.
The current population of information superhighway fluent individuals provides schools with a population that loves to learn; this is a huge opportunity. Barnes, Mareto, Ferris (2007) One key characteristic of this generation is that they are very education oriented . This generation is extremely goal-oriented, and achieving their career ambitions entails a good education. Happily for educators, Net Geners' learning goals do not change in college. Most can be expected to continue to sacrifice weekends to study, to regard the consequences of poor grades seriously, and to attend classes regularly. Even if only in order to enable future success in their chosen careers, Net Geners, on the whole, want to do well in college. Hooft (2007) “Today's K-12 students are different from students twenty, ten, or even five years ago . Many of them communicate, learn, and think in ways that adults often do not understand.” We must accept the capabilities of our current students as equal, if not better, than students of the past .
Essential Learnings with clear objectives tied directly to the implementation of technology is vital in order to improve student achievement. According to Spradlin and Palozzi (2006), “In order to determine cost-effectiveness, expected educational outcomes must be clearly defined.” Schacter (1999) included from a study that the success rate of technology is very individualized but does hinge on the program design of the implementation of the technology.
Educators must understand technology that is already available to their students and embrace that opportunity. We must implement technology regardless of research. Fact dictates that personal wireless electronic devices are flooding worlds of students; we must utilize that technology as well. According to Hooft Brown-Martin (2009), Unlike many other technologies currently employed for learning, wireless mobile devices promote learning that is learner, not teacher or technology, centered. The nature of the technology lends itself very well to both individual learning and collaboration. Individual learning occurs when learners engage privately with learning content, while collaboration is public and usually involves conversation, discussion, or sharing.
Conclusion: Countless research speaks to the fact that technology can improve student learning . As it is already an extremely significant portion of students’ worlds today, educators must use technology to improve student achievement, not only for the sake of achievement, but for making their curriculum relevant to the modern world we live in. By accepting technology for student achievement , understanding the net generation , developing a structured implementation of the technology, and embracing personal technology of the students , current educational institutions can provide an educational curriculum that is both rigorous and relevant to our current world. Without technology as an integral part of this system, our students will not succeed in our present technological world; we must bring it into the classroom in a way that is effective for the students and their achievement capabilities.
“ Children are already accustomed to a world that moves faster and is more exciting than anything a teacher in front of a classroom can do.”
“ Education technology and school construction go together. Modernization, updating education facilities, and making a capital investment in education are all included.” “ Education technology is very important because we have a massive challenge in public schools.” “ Excitement in education and student productivity, the ability to get a result that you want from students, go together and cannot be separated.” “ I do not think we are ever going to be able to, for a long time, get the kind of quality of school personnel that we need in our schools, especially in the areas of science and math. One of the answers to that problem is to use more educational technology.” Major Owens: United States House of Representatives Quotes Obtained From: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/m/major_owens.html
According to the meta analysis of Schacter (1999), Score Levels Utilizing Computers Student Scores Without Computers Student Appreciation of Courses Level of Mastery Time Devoted to Subject Area
Personal Electronic Devices: Flooding the World Regardless of What Research Shows
Wireless Mobile Electronic Devices: Student-Centered vs. Teacher-Centered Technology
The Final Collaboration Understanding the Data Associated with Technology and Education Re-define Our Intentions And Define Clear Cost-Effective Objectives Understanding The Net Generation Embrace Already Available Technology of the Students
References Barnes, K., R. Marateo, and S. Ferris. (2007). Teaching and learning with the net generation. Innovate. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from http://www.innovateonline.info/ Palozzi, V. J. and T. E. Spradlin. (2006). Educational technology in Indiana: Is it worth the investment? Education Policy Brief. Bloomington: Center for Evaluation & Education Policy Schacter, J. (1999). The impact of education technology on student achievement: What the most current research ash to say. Milken Exchange on Educational Technology. Santa Monica: Milken Family Foundation Van’t Hooft, M. and G. Brown-Martin. (2009). Anywhere anytime learning with wireless A mobile devices. Encyclopedia of multimedia technology and networking. New York: Information Science Van’t Hooft, M. (2007). Schools, children, and digital technology: Building better relationships for a better tomorrow. Innovate. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from www.innovateonline.info/