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Computers in education Essay

Computers have rapidly become one of the most vital parts of our civilization today. Computerized applications have set no limits in technological innovations. As a result, the human history has drastically changed since the revolutionary invention of computer. In December 1943, the first electric programmable computer, the Colossus, was introduced. Since then, computers not only have propelled innumerate industries to unquestionable success, but also created new industry like Information Technology. Computer-based instruction is becoming more prevalent in secondary education in the United States. Using computers to deliver instruction can help to correct inequities in educational opportunities that exist due to race/ethnicity, budget constraints, geographical location, income, school size, and substandard teaching (Carroll, 2000).

There is no doubt that most up-to-date technological features cannot be fully appreciated, if future generations do not adapt and learn the technology. Future generation’s early adaptation in use of computers is extremely essential for further progress of technology; the computer’s constant technological advancements provide more extensive learning resources through multi web referencing tools and enhance students’ understanding by user friendly integrated programs.

As of the traditional teaching process, using blackboard to present materials has been time consuming. Especially when the teacher’s back obscures what is being written on the blackboard, lack of attention from students automatically increase. Arguably, excessive usage of the blackboard in teaching limits the way of conveying materials in creative manner. For example, writing on a blackboard provides an inflexible presentation with few colors and styles, as well as difficulties in displaying pictures or multimedia content. On the other hand, “with the right software, they could help make science tangible or teach neglected topics like art and music.

They help students form a concrete idea of society by displaying onscreen version of the city which they live.” (Gelernter 278) Another disadvantage of using a blackboard is that once the information written on the board is erased, it cannot be reproduced, or interchanged. Consequently, students have to make notes or copy the material from the blackboard, all of which is inconvenient (Apperson, Laws, & Scepansky, 2008). By implementing computers in classrooms, class times lost in taking notes will be allocated more efficiently, and perhaps, portions of saved class times can be utilized for other small educational activities.

According to William R. Thomas, Director of Educational Technology for the Southern Regional Education Board, “virtual high schooling is no longer a marginal educational activity. It is rapidly becoming a mainstream component of secondary education in the United States. For example, there are now over 19,000 virtual high school students in the state of Florida. In 1998 there were fewer than 1,000.” The study vividly shows the positive impact that computer implementation had on virtual schooling over the last decade. The main factor for such success was largely due to students’ access to the internet.

Physically handicapped students and temporarily disabled students now have the benefit of utilizing online education for their convenience. The Internet has “won” the technology struggle for primacy in education (Carroll, 2000). The Internet alone has completely altered the way in which students research information, facilitated distance education, and led to an increase in the spread of ideas (Diodato, 2007). World-widely shared information database has brought abundant educational resources to students. Computers in education can unload heavily burdened shoulders of college students, using the recent tablet technology. Students for instance Apple’s

Cyber-safety is defined as the safe and responsible use of information and communication technologies (Balfour, 2005; Beach, 2007), including protection against unsolicited marketing and advertising (Frechette, 2005). Cyber-safety teaches children about the positive and negative aspects of ICT (Livingstone & Haddon, 2009), safeguarding against individuals who operate websites, attempt to contact children online, or to organize unsupervised meetings in person with children (Grey, 77). Cyber-safety education also involves guidance on cyber-ethics to form a responsible attitude to the use of ICT (Berson & Berson, 2004). Educating young children about cyber-safety is complicated, as young children often do not understand the social and technical complexity of the internet (Yan, 2006).

Child protection programs are successful if children’s developmental level and cognitive abilities are considered, if abstract terms are avoided, and clear rules are repeated often so children retain the information (Sanderson, 2004) “Mobile technology customizes the learning experience to better fit students’ preferred mode, media, and pace of learning. It helps students connect with courses, content, and each other. It helps share insight on academic progress between teachers, students, and parents, and allows students to create content for assignments directly from devices and more.” (Etter, 2011) Technological literate people would possess knowledge, ways of thinking and acting, and capabilities that assist them as they interact with the technology found in their environments (Pearson & Young, 2002).

Works Cited
Apperson, J. M., Laws, E. L., & Scepansky, J. A. (2008). An assessment of studentpreferences for PowerPoint presentation structure in undergraduate courses. Computers & Education, 50(1), 148–153 Blaylock, T. Hendon, and Joseph W. Newman. “The impact of computer-based secondaryeducation.” Education 125.3 (2005): 373+. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 12 Mar. 2012. Balfour, C. (2005). A journey of social change: Turning government digital strategy into cybersafe local school practice. Paper presented at the Safety & Security in a Networked World: Balancing Cyber-rights & Responsibilities conference, Oxford, UK Beach, R. (2007). New Zealand’s first steps to cybersafety. Paper presented at the Early Childhood Convention, Rotorua, NZ Carroll, T.G. (2000). If we didn’t have the schools we have today, would we create theschools we have today? Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 1(1), 117-140. Diodato, Michael. “Innovative age: technology for education in the developing world.”Harvard International Review 28.4 (2007): 38+. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 12 Mar. 2012. Etter, Ryan. “VISIONS OF MOBILE LEARNING. (Cover Story).” T H E Journal 38.9 (2011): 28-34. Academic Search Premier. Web. 12 Mar. 2012.
Frechette, J. (2005). Cyber-democracy or cyber-hegemony? Exploring the political and economic structures of the internet as an alternative source of information. Library Trends, 53(4), pp. 555-575

Gelernter, David. “Unplugged: The Myth of Computers in the Classroom”. The McGraw-Hill Reader 11th edi. Ed.Gilbert Muller. New York: McGraw Hill, 2011. 278-280 Grey, Anne. “Cybersafety In Early Childhood Education.” Australasian Journal Of Early Childhood 36.2 (2011): 77-81. Academic Search Premier. Web. 12 Mar. 2012 Livingstone, S., & Haddon, L. (2009). EU Kids Online: Final report. LSE, London: EUKids Online (EC Safer Internet Plus Programme Deliverable D6.5) Pearson, G., & Young, A.T. (2002). Technically speaking: Why all Americans need to know more about technology. Washington, DC: National Academies Press Sanderson, J. (2004). Child-focused sexual abuse prevention programs: How effective are they in preventing child abuse? Research & Issues Paper Series, 5, June 2004 Yan, Z. (2006). What influences children’s and adolescents’ understanding of the complexity of the internet? Developmental Psychology, 42(3), pp. 418–428.


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