Impact Of Technology In The Present Education Times Essay

Length: 5 pages Sources: 10 Subject: Film Type: Essay Paper: #84364242 Related Topics: Smartphones, Technology Impact, Muscular System, Early Childhood Education
Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … advances are made in technology, an increasing number of different forms of technologies, new uses and changes are being made in integrating new technologies into special education so as to benefit learners with disabilities. Research has made tremendous contributions in developing new technologies. Policymakers, too, have enabled the faster adoption of new technologies in special education so as to help learners with different kinds of behavioral and academic challenges. For instance, as early as 1994, James Kulik utilized meta-analysis to collect and analyze the results of over 500 different studies on computer-based learning. Technology-based learning, particularly through the use of computers, individualizes the learning process, so as to accommodate inclinations, knowledge systems, styles of learning, interests and needs of learners. Different forms of computer-based education software have been developed for such purposes, for instance, the Integrated Learning Systems. James Kulik made several conclusions upon the completion of the meta-analysis: that learners who utilized computer-based learning scored at 64% on assessments achievement relative to the control group (learners who were not using computers) whose average score was 50%; students could also learn more at shorter periods of time using computers; and that students also tended to like their classes more and were more likely to have a positive attitude towards education when using computers. However, it was also revealed that not all aspects of learning using computers yielded positive results (Schacter, 1999).

Importance of Instructional Technology Integration for Students with Special Needs

According to Peterson-Karlan and Parette in their 2005 work, technology offers a channel through which students can develop communication and social skills that are frequently lacking in students with disability who started school after the year 2000. Nowadays, learners have access to technological devices that their counterparts in the 1990s didn't have. Technologies, such as the use of mobile phones (smartphones to be precise) have dropped in prices, enabling many students to own such technologies. For instance, a 2013 survey by Grunwald Associates LLC, revealed that 60% and 43% of high school and pre-K-12 students, respectively, had used a smartphone, and that the majority of them had used one at least once on a daily basis. The researchers noted that 51% of high school students surveyed brought their phones to school on a day-to-day basis. Smartphones can offer students access to IT (Instructional Technology) and AT (Assistive Technology) applications or programs, such as dictionaries, reminders, voice recognition software, planners and thousands of other interesting applications (Israel, Marino, Delisio, & Serianni, 2014). However, 72% of parents in the aforementioned 2013 survey noted that the schools that their students went to had policies that did not allow the utilization of family-owned smartphones at school. This is unhelpful as a growing body of research shows that learners with disabilities often gain more from using computer-based instructional tools compared to their counterparts in mainstream learning institutions (Marino, 2009).

The in-built adaptability of technological devices also means that they can be utilized to suit the special learning needs of learners with disabilities. In a study that took eight months, researcher Parr utilized a text-to-speech technology (TTST) to enhance comprehension, normal reading and decoding of material. In her study that involved twenty eight students, Parr shows the significance of matching technology to the individual needs of learners. Despite the positive results recorded in outcome measures, Parr argues that the text-to-speech technology is usually just an alternative and not a substitute for skilled readers. Other researchers have noted that preschoolers who are deaf and or suffer from impaired hearing can increase their literacy skills if they are shown educational videos presented using ASL (American Sign Language). The researchers also noted that literacy skills could be improved even more by increasing viewing times and incorporating follow-up measures (Butler-Kisber, 2013).

Statistics

According to The Journal's researcher, David Nagel, in his report titled "Students Use Smart Phones and Tablets for School, Want More," the use of technology in schools is growing exponentially. Nagel, in a study on the utilization of technology in classrooms, reports of how the research surveyed more than two thousand three hundred students between grade 4 and 12. The report reveals that, of the students who were in

...

Of the 2300 students surveyed, 92% believed that tablets would soon change the manner through which students will learn in the next few years, 90% reported that the tablets made learning more fun, and 82% reported that tablets already help students achieve more in classrooms (Clercq, 2015).

According to another study by researchers Kristin Javorky and Guy Trainin, in their work titled "Teaching Young Readers to Navigate a Digital Story When Rules Keep Changing," there is increase in the adoption of new digital reading technologies. The two authors of the study note that about 50% of children in the United States aged 8 or younger have at least one digital reading device at home (606). The report goes further to specify that 32% of the adults they surveyed had an e-reader, 42% a tablet/iPad and 55% had a smartphone. The researchers in their work also recommend the adoption of technological-based instructional methods that students could take advantage of (Clercq, 2015).

Spelling and Assistive Technology: Helping Students With Disabilities Become Successful Writers

While the utilization of spelling-assistive instructional technologies could help learners with disabilities; other learners still require other tools to gain spelling proficiency and access learning materials (Sitko et al., 2005; Strangman & Dalton, 2005; Wehmeyer et al., 2004). Several studies have shown that students with physical disabilities could learn more if they had access to spelling instruction (Browder et al., 2006). The approach that can enable one to gain the most when using assistive technology is through the use of individualized/specialized Education Programs so as to match the right devices to the right learners. Taking the teachers and parents through familiarization programs to learn about the assistive technologies can help further improve learning outcomes (Heller, Mezei, & Avant, 2008). Students who have physical disabilities and cannot go to school can be helped using technology to still continue learning at home, for instance, through the use of web cameras and laptops. However, for such students, they will still likely have writing fluency difficulties (Simmons & Carpenter, 2010).

Other issues that challenge writing fluency were highlighted by researchers, Best, Heller and Bigge, in their 2005 work, which argued that students with physical disabilities could be challenged by chronic absenteeism from classroom readings to difficulties in reading and writing, inexperience, limited practice and participation in activities, and restricted motor ability. Another pair of researchers, Simmons and Carpenter (2010), argues that students with physical disabilities, who also happened to have speech impairments, could use their writing ability as an alternative mode of communication, both in academics and social interactions. The fact that significant advances have been made in technology means that education policymakers should also make changes in their mode of delivery so as to take advantage of the new modes of delivery and the new opportunities (Clercq, 2015).

Conceptual Framework: Acceptable Use of Technology Policy (AUP)

The mixture of curriculum and technology is highly visible in the daily lives of the students; with the students growing and developing, technology becomes a huge part of their lives, and they are expected to use it for the best purposes, while also maintaining their responsibilities. The conceptual framework will include:

Independent variable:

Technology, Acceptable use of technology policy (AUP)

Dependent variable:

Instructions on use of technology;

Awareness of basic computing skills

Supervision of the teachers;

Use of multimedia;

Use of online portals and apps;

Formation of student clubs for assistance

Every student in this framework would receive instructions related to technology during the week, and their curriculum would include the expansion and development of computing skills, which would move from the basic level to a higher level. The students in the second grade would learn the basics of computing skills i.e. keyboard awareness and mouse skills. The students in 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade would expand their abilities through different projects that would include: research, writing and multimedia presentations (PennCharter, n.d.). The use of AUP is a privilege that is meant to increase learning of the students through kindergarten to fifth grade. AUP provides a framework for technological use and instructions, and developing the understanding of the students. With the supervision by the teachers, the students of grade three to five are able to understand the responsibilities that technology gives them. Google Apps for Education is one online tool that includes email, websites, calendars and documents, and since AUP is age appropriate, the children begin developing their skills in the second grade. The students get to develop their skills as well as learn safe, ethical and responsible technology. Chromebook is given to the students of four and fifth grade to be used for class work and homework. Typing club is another web-based program that teaches the students of third, fourth and fifth grade how to…

Sources Used in Documents:

Bibliography

Best, S. J., Heller, K. W., & Bigge, J. L. (2005). Teaching individuals with physical or multiple disabilities (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson

Browder, D.M., Spooner, F., Wakeman, S., Trela, K., & Baker, J.N. (2006). Aligning instruction with academic content standards: Finding the link. Research & Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities, 31(4), 309-321

Butler-Kisber, L. (2013). Teaching and Learning in the Digital World: Possibilities and Challenges. Learning Landscapes.

Clercq, C. K. (2015). Digitally Enhanced Classrooms: Understanding the Effect of Individualized Technology on Language Arts Instruction in Elementary Schools. University Honors Theses .
Grunwald Associates LLC. (2013). Living and learning with mobile devices: What parents think about mobile devices for early childhood and K-12 learning. Retrieved from Learning First Alliance website: http://www.learningfirst.org/LivingandLearningwithMobileDevices
Penn Charter.(n.d.).Lower School Technology. William Penn Charter School. Retrieved from: http://www.penncharter.com/page.cfm?p=2759


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