Digital Education: Pros and Cons

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    Currently, society has incorporated ICT into different areas of life, such as the daily use of smartphones to today’s integration of robots with Artificial Intelligence (AI) in companies. In the case of education, these technologies have also completely transformed how students learn and how teachers teach in classrooms, especially considering that the current generations of children and youth (Centennials) are digital natives; that is, those who base their communication and interaction through these tools.

    However, as parents, the use of technology in education can generate some concerns about the impact they have on their learning experiences. Therefore, in this article, we’ll discuss in length some of the benefits and disadvantages concerning the issue of digital learning, also called digital education.

    Advantages of the Use of Digital Tools in Education

    1.       Quick access to information

    The main benefit that is realized when using the internet and digital devices in the classroom is that they represent an open the door to a huge universe of information. Online students can find a wide range of content from many areas, which increases their knowledge.

    2.       Self-learning and autonomy

    When students master the use of computers or other digital technologies, they are better able to learn for themselves, given the many educational possibilities available on the Internet. You can take online courses, access webinars, and tutorials, etc. This means that the student acquires much more autonomy because he can decide what he is interested in learning.

    3.       Horizontal communication

    The emergence of digital technologies within schools has revolutionized the way of teaching that teachers had until now. The classes in which the teacher explained and the students were limited to listening and taking notes, tend to disappear. The new technologies encourage a much more participatory education in which there is feedback between students and teachers.

    4.       Learning aid

    Digital learning resources contribute to the learning of school children, as they increase the teaching techniques of teachers. Now teachers can rely on online, animated presentations, audio, and video, etc. It is proven that these systems favor the attention and concentration levels of students, so school results will be better than with traditional tactics.

    5.       More interactivity

    For students, the inclusion of tech in the classroom has become a more attractive form of interaction and entertainment, which greatly increases their interest. With this, they feel motivated to have tools that promote access to a variety of educational activities in the same place, for example, the use of educational apps for teaching languages, mathematics, grammar, history, etc.

    This also allows them to manage their learning autonomously and personalized at their own pace, using the materials that most attract their attention and are enriching for their learning experience. Undoubtedly, this ability will be very useful as they grow.

    6.       Improved students creativity

    On the other hand, technologies encourage students’ creativity due to the contact they have with various sources of information and formats (videos, texts, audio, among others). This, in turn, causes logical understanding and reasoning to be faster.

    7.       Efficient performance evaluation

    Finally, performance evaluation processes are more efficient and accurate. Thus, as a parent, you can have a better track of your child’s educational progress.

    Disadvantages of digital learning

    1.       Information quality

    Although with access to the internet, students can get to access a lot of information, however, there is a major disadvantage. As is with many internet-based tools or services, an essay pro review  puts it succinctly that users, including students, stand to be “completely satisfied” or “be disappointed” with what’s offered in the digital space. Students run the risk of finding erroneous, false and even fraudulent content.

    2.       Requires previous training

    To make proper use of new technologies, students must know how to handle them. This requires prior training in computer science and information and communication technologies (ICT). And it is still not very well defined who should give such training, whether the school or the families. The truth is that computer subjects are included in school programs, but sometimes, it is not enough. So parents should also make an effort in this regard.

    3.       School investment

    Equipping a classroom with computer resources and mobile devices is not cheap. It requires an economic investment by the educational center not only when buying the equipment, but also in its maintenance. Computers, tablets, and mobiles are delicate devices and if you add that they are going to have to go through many hands, the risk of them breaking down grows exponentially.

    4.       Social inequality

    Although it may seem that internet access is now common to everyone, the truth is that there are still many families who cannot afford it. Therefore, it can create social inequalities within the classroom and between classmates. It is advised, therefore, that teachers carry out their technological lessons in the classroom so that children who do not have adequate equipment are not relegated.

    5.       They can create dependency

    The use of technology can generate mental laziness in students. These tools simplify the resolution of tasks or activities with a single click, preventing them from analyzing in detail what they are learning. According to Apples, 85% of mobile users consider these devices indispensable in their daily lives. It is a sample of how addictive devices such as tablets or laptops can be. Therefore, schools must instill a prudential use of these technological resources, because if not, they can become counterproductive.

    For example, in the case of grammar tasks, the autocorrect program for smart devices prevents students from realizing their mistakes and depending on the suggestions they receive from those tools. The same applies to calculation work, where children or young people lose the numerical ability to perform operations without the use of calculators.

    They become dependent on technology, which can cause their learning to slow down or obtain false or unreliable information from websites by not having adequate pedagogical support.

    Bottom Line

    Certainly, technology in education brings great advantages for students, teachers, and parents. However, children and young people must obtain a correct formative orientation that encourages them to use these tools for their benefit, instead of interrupting their education.

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