A new study from the National Assessment of Educational Progress adds confusion to the debate over technology use in schools. The New York Times recently reported on the findings of this organization, which is part of the U.S. Department of Education.
One of the central points surrounds the use of computers in math class. Many middle school students reported that computers were used for drill work and not sophisticated problem solving. Students from poorer backgrounds reported more use of computers for drill work versus problem solving. The question asked is whether the underprivileged are best served in this manner. While schools race to add technology, are they overlooking the skills the skills that instructors should be teaching?
Another point from the study concluded science classrooms were slow in embracing technology and thus, made little difference in learning.
Meanwhile, the debate rages on as educators face either letting students learn using software-based programs, or coupling it with classroom-led instruction. A study conducted for the Department of Education found this combination was most effective in elevating some statewide math scores.
Does technology make a difference in your classroom? Do you rely on it too much, or too little?