12 Oct





 min read

The Impact of Technology on Education 

Technology underpins all subjects in school. Learning how to use and create technology empowers an innovative generation of students.

Do you remember the sound (and smell) of your teacher’s markers on the overhead projector? Those little squeaky transparent sheets held all your fraction lessons for the day. That is until the dry eraser spray came out and it was time for some grammar lessons to shine on the classroom wall.

Or, maybe you went to school when Smartboards were first popping up. That sensation of dragging an image across the board felt like something out of a Star Trek movie. 

Technology in education has never been about computers alone. Edtech, as it often referred, is “the practice of introducing information and communication technology tools into the classroom,” according to Bulitin.com. Overhead projectors, Smartboards, TVs, and even attendance and grading tools are all considered a part of edtech. 

Why is technology important in education? We’ll explore how these educational technologies improve the daily lives of teachers and students. Plus, how the technologies students use fortify their curiosity and potential for innovation. 

Folder paper, keyboards, and video games 

Imagine you’re arriving to school in the morning. What do you absolutely need in your backpack? As generations of students grow and graduate, those backpack essentials begin to look a little different. 

Some may say a pencil and paper is an absolute priority. However, many schools now use laptops and tablets for note taking. Technology in the classroom reflects the times and world around us. 

One day, maybe we won’t be taking notes on tablets. Maybe, we’ll use lenses or voice recording to capture our vital memories from the day and review them later. 

(Think of how the pandemic has already shifted what it means to go to school.)

Technology in school exposes students to the devices, materials, and softwares that will most likely appear in the working world. 

I grew up when AOL was just beginning. I had a class called “Computers” right before lunch. We learned how to type, search the internet, and make art on drawing softwares. The typing lessons I had then still inform my use of computers and other input devices as I’ve become a professional. 

Today, computers, tablets, cameras, and software are woven into nearly every class. Art students learn how to use Photoshop to manipulate images, esports students play games online and get a first hand look at PC building and network maintenance, math students make real-world models and graphs using different variations of software and hardware. 

According to a report from the Institute of Education Sciences, 45% of public schools in the United States  have computers available for each student. This number does not reflect the growing access to technology devices in the home and in public spaces such as libraries and co-working hubs. 

Beyond computers, there are also more schools with student-accessible 3D printers, building tools, biology and environmental tools, science instruments, and more. 

When I grew up, the focus was on accessing technology. Today, students use technology to their imaginations limit. Next, students will push technology and their imagination to new levels.

Trends in educational technology 

According to Thinkific, a software that enables users to launch their own online courses, edtech trends are pointing towards gamification, augmented reality (AR and VR), and artificial intelligence. 

Gamification ties directly into esports. Since games naturally engage kids thanks to their friendly competition, social environment, and personalization, putting lessons into gaming worlds helps children engage with course material in novel ways. 

For example, Minecraft for Education allows teachers to build history lessons in a Minecraft world or re-enact a social concept. Students participate with one another and feel inspired to take agency in the world. 

Augmented reality (AR), similar to video games with their virtual environments and manipulation, gives students access to global concepts, views of architecture and history without needing to travel, or seeing three dimensional designs in-place. AR represents the next step of exposing students to design and blending virtual and in-person reality. 

As our in-person reality becomes increasingly dependent on technology, artificial intelligence (A.I.) is slowly making it’s way into classrooms, too. A.I. powers devices like our phones and tools such as search engines, healthcare analysis, and financial information. While A.I. is a difficult concept, introducing it at an early age helps students grasp the differences between data and information, natural intelligence, and human interactions with computers. 

The impact of technology on education

The more technology continues to immerse student’s personal lives, the more it will impact their education. The importance of technology in education touches upon more than creativity and creation, too. 

School environments allow for a greater potential for equality and access to technology. 

When a group of children from diverse backgrounds has access to the same tools, they learn each other’s perspectives, create solutions that fit their unique needs, and develop an equitable baseline for their future technology use. 

Technology literacy in school prepares students for college, the workplace, and a rapidly changing world. It is important to be open minded as students access tech in the classroom and real-world. While it may appear uncertain at first, using a new technology in the class is vital for students to have a strong foundation in tech literacy, creativity, and imagination. 

After all, imagine how foreign an overhead projector felt at first. For decades, it was a standard in ensuring all students could see critical course information. 

Now, it is a thing of the past. Students have personalized lessons, 24/7 access to material, and an ability to learn anywhere. As we evolve, so too will our classrooms. 

At Vanta, we find it incredibly important to continue to improve the way that technology impacts education. We offer free esports leagues for schools looking to compete and develop their esports program, so that students everywhere can reap the benefits.

Learning technology literacy in school prepares students for college, the workplace, and a rapidly changing world.

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