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benefits of the internet on education

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benefits of the internet on education

  1. 1. Running head: DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 1 Does Internet Benefit Education? Name Institution
  2. 2. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 2 Does Internet Benefit Education? Initially, the use of technology in education was a controversial topic in the society. Policymakers, politicians, and scholars had different arguments regarding modernization of education through the use of technology. There were both negative and positive views on the utilization of technology in education. On the positive side, technology enhances the efficiency of education systems by helping administrators and teachers to improve assessment and streamline daily activities. Its use in the classroom ensures that students play an active role in enhancing learning through research. Technology also extends learning beyond traditional classrooms because students have access to information from any location. Because of the benefits, online education is considered a perfect alternative to brick-and-mortar college learning. While some schools or programs do not have an online option, those that have adopted technology in teaching are regionally or nationally accredited. However, the existent of online education has made it impossible for teachers and students to interact face- to -face. As such, it is difficult for instructors to assess students’ feelings about what they learn as well as provide them with feedback. Besides, updating online curriculum is time consuming unlike traditional curriculum. Online education has also resulted into increased rates of drop out because students who cannot learn on their own find it challenging to complete tasks. Despite the weaknesses, online learning has a wide range of benefits, including minimization of costs of education, increased student learning and building relationships, allows policy makers and instructors to design instructions that satisfies the needs of the current generation of students, has resulted in the development of personalized education program as well as inclusive learning. The Importance of Technology in Education
  3. 3. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 3 The use of the internet such as the social networking sites enhances student learning experience as well as in building relationships and managing their personal affairs. Young people and teenagers across the world are using social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, My Space, and Google + to learn, develop relationship, and manage their intimacy and privacy. In the educational context, social networking sites provide students with an opportunity to learn, build relationships, gain exposure to diverse perspectives and groups as well as manage personal affairs. Additionally, the use of social networking tools extends individuals’ learning experiences beyond conventional classrooms (Huffman, 2013). The use of technological tools provides both the classroom teachers and other school personnel including principals, school librarians, and counselor an opportunity to serve learners from any location. The use of internet in education helps policy makers and educators to design instructions that satisfy the needs of the current generation of students including interactive learning, co- creation, originality, and collaboration. Most instructors across the world are using technology to satisfy the needs of the current generation of students by designing teaching programs that suit the interests of each learner. However, the instructors and policymakers are expected to ensure that pedagogy dictates the decisions that they make while applying technological applications in the classroom. According to Clayton, Hettche, and Dae-Hee (2014), attention span for students is approximately ten minutes despite the fact that course schedules at the university level are designed to last two or three hours. It is the responsibility of teachers to ensure that class activities have a positive impact on each student’s knowledge acquisition ability. Technological advancement has enabled them to ensure learning continuity throughout the year. However, student participation is still restricted to class sessions and exam time. The challenges have compelled college educators to adopt social media tools as a means of maintaining consistent
  4. 4. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 4 course work. Besides, enhancing student participation through online platforms permits learners to associate course content with life experiences. Additionally, the use of social media provides them with a forum to debate issues of their interest. In fact social media is evolving at a rapid rate because of the growing domination of digital communication. It is important for educators to take into consideration how they can take advantage of technological growth to improve course outcomes and students’ learning experiences. Furthermore, the authors contend that the use of technology allows students to gain knowledge, act upon it, and revise it whenever necessary. For instance, social media platforms not only require individuals to engage, respond, and take actions. On the contrary, it also permits co-creation, originality, and collaboration (Clayton, Hettche, & Dae-Hee, 2014). Another benefit of technology in education is acting as an equalizer by eliminating geographical barriers to access to information. It also provides shy students with an opportunity to contribute to classroom discussions. Through asynchronous interaction, learners have adequate time to premeditate on their contributions and be thoughtful. Cost and convenience are the main reasons for the increasing enrollment for online courses. McPherson & Bacow( 2015) state that online education increased from 10% to 33% between 2002 and 2012. The authors note that online learning involves the use of various resources to deliver course content. In particular, utilization of videos allows students to replay recordings in order to grasp issues that they do not understand (McPherson & Bacow, 2015). Equally, educational institutions find online courses appealing because they are cheap and permit them to offer students’ credit-bearing courses regardless of their geographical locations. Distant learning has enabled many individuals to acquire college certificates while working on a full- time basis.
  5. 5. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 5 Technology permits the development of personalized education programs and inclusive learning. According to Bulfin, Johnson, and Bigum(2015), technology plays an essential role in the current education system. It enhances learning because it supports personalized educational programs while promoting students access to useful materials. Additionally, the use of technology in modern institutions permits instructors to deliver content in various ways and identify ways through which students can present their research findings to tutors and other leaners. According to Bulfin, Johnson, and Bigum (2015), many students do not enjoy using tools such as pens, papers, and traditional libraries to complete assignments. Technology provides them with a platform to perform a wide range of tasks without moving from one place to another. The authors argue that the use of technology in education creates an inclusive learning environment. In fact, students own the classroom technology resources since each learner has a personal computer that is used for communication with the instructor. Besides, technology enables tutors to access content that is presented to students and even designs video footage to emphasize or creatively introduce concepts. In a study that was conducted by the article’s authors on the importance of technology in education, one of the participants said, “I like for students to have the freedom to work at their own pace and explore their own special interests within an area of study” (Bulfin, Johnson, & Bigum, 2015). Such views from teachers who are key stakeholders in the education sector emphasize the significance of technology in learning. Reasons why internet-based education is not useful Despite the benefits of using social media in education, it is important for educators to address risks that are associated with the student’s use of the platforms including increased incidents of bullying, loss of privacy, and harmful contacts. For instance, the convenience and
  6. 6. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 6 speed of distribution of content can decline if institutions limit the use of the Internet (Huffman, 2013). Thus, technology is a crucial tool in the modern society where developments are driven by information sharing and collaboration among different sectors. If it is utilized wisely and appropriately, it transforms the experiences of both students and teachers to enhance learning processes. Accordingly, the author notes the use of technology in education has a number of disadvantages. For instance, some students fail to read the responses of their fellow learners because they focus on understanding comments that are posted by the instructor on social media sites. Additionally, others write responses with the primary objective of fulfilling classroom requirements, especially participation in specific activities. In some instances, students make anonymous comments to either criticize their instructors or whine about how difficult the assignments are. On the other hand, professors compel students to respond to online educational chats on a regular basis, failing to monitor the outcomes of the discussions. Addressing the drawbacks requires course instructors to be proactive in promoting the vibrancy of the learning environment. They should also use social media tools to facilitate interactions with students, especially when dealing with learners who feel shy or uncomfortable to air their opinions during classroom discussions. Equally, internet has allowed instructors to use videos to enhance students’ learning experience. However, the use of videos makes it challenging for students to receive feedback and ask questions online. Learners often prefer teaching strategies that enable them to take part in discussions or ask questions. While curriculum developers value the flexibility and standardized frameworks that are offered by technology, a majority of students may not achieve the goals of education without platforms to receive feedback from tutors, a reason for increasing rates of dropouts among online students. In fact, most employers are unwilling to hire graduates who
  7. 7. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 7 have online degrees because they doubt the quality of training that is offered through virtual training. Others believe online education is just an appealing exercise, but not a valuable or rewarding process like classroom teaching. Besides, McPherson and Bacow (2015) argue that it is harder to design a computer-adaptive instructional program compared to creating a classroom curriculum. Additionally, the authors point out that updating online curriculum is time consuming and cumbersome. The process requires the existing content to be edited, reshooting of videos, and modifying the software. The changes should also involve the support of various parties such as software engineers, web designers, editors, camera operators, instructional designers, and even tutors. In conclusion, technology plays a crucial role in transforming the education sector. Despite the fact that brick-and-motor colleges, universities, and schools will continue to exist, technology offers teachers and students more learning opportunities compared to traditional classrooms. Besides, online courses save money and time. However, technology minimizes direct interaction between teachers and student, limiting the capability of the former to assess the attitude of learners towards content that is being taught.
  8. 8. DOES INTERNET BENEFIT EDUCATION 8 References Bulfin, S., Johnson, N. F., & Bigum, C. (2015). Critical perspectives on technology and education. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Clayton, M. J., Hettche, M., & Dae-Hee, K. (2014). Moving participation beyond the classroom: Who benefits from online social communities? Journal of Advertising Education, 18(1), 5-13. Huffman, S. (2013). Benefits and pitfalls: simple guidelines for the use of social networking tools in K-12 education. Education, 134(2), 154-160. McPherson, M. S., & Bacow, L. S. (2015). Online higher education: beyond the hype cycle. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 29(4), 135-154.

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