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Research on Technology in the Classroom

Instructor: David Raudenbush
These days, it's nearly impossible to find a classroom that doesn't have at least one computer in it. Fortunately, research suggests adding technology to a classroom can have a positive effect on teaching and learning.

Prospective teachers often hear this question during job interviews: 'How will you incorporate technology into your classroom?' The question reflects a common assumption in education, using technology in the classroom will improve learning. Most current research shows the assumption has some truth to it. However, studies show that schools need to do more than make classrooms look like the bridge of the starship Enterprise. Educators must combine the technology with effective teaching strategies to produce the greatest results.

New technology is changing the way students learn in classrooms.
Student Tech

Changing Classrooms

Technology appears in modern classrooms through a variety of methods and devices. The list includes online learning, project-based learning, game-based learning, interactive whiteboards, desktop computers, tablet computers, cell phones, and social networking. Surveys show that most teachers and administrators in K-12 schools believe that technology has a positive impact on classrooms. In a 2011 survey by CompTIA, a trade association in the IT field, found that 78 percent of educators they questioned felt technology had a positive effect on classrooms. Additionally, 65 percent of the educators said technology made their students more productive.

Research published in the Journal of Research on Technology in Education examined 174 international case studies and found that teachers reported innovative technologies improved the teaching practices in their classrooms. According to the report, information technology in the classroom allowed students to conduct research and create presentations. The report also found that adding technology changes the structure of the classroom. Instead of a traditional classroom structure in which there is more of a teacher-directed focus, with the implementation of technology, teachers create activities, then act as a guide for students while they monitor progress.

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