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There are many advantages that have come since the introduction of digital technology within classrooms of all education levels. Each advantage and disadvantage can be argued and debated over whether or not they are correct. A common consensus for this debate is that the quality of education is not dependant on the technology in the classroom but rather on the teacher who is able to take the needs and abilities of their students into account when using any form of technology in the classroom.



Advantages

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One of the advantages of having computer-assisted instruction in the classroom is that the computer can serve as a tutor. Teachers can only help students in the learning process to a certain level and only during school hours. Computers and other similar forms of digital technology allow the student to continue their studies at home and can act as a tutor for the students who are falling behind. New technology also allows students to advance at their own pace as they learn.

Another advantage of new technology (such as the smart board, electronic readers, handheld dictionaries, ipads, etc.) information can be presented in such a large variety of ways (visually, orally, differently sized fonts, different colours, etc.) that almost any type of learner can benefit and learn through the new technologies.

The internet and other forms of technology give students access to a huge wealth of knowledge that previously was not as accessible to students. Efficiency is a huge benefit from having technology in the classrooms. Teachers and students alike can quickly access vast amounts of information and present in through a variety of mediums.

Another benefit that people argue is that technology, especially the internet, allows for equality within education. The information and the technology that students use are available for everyone, they just have to go get it. Of course, this is referring more to the use of the internet because certain educational technologies are too expensive for less fortunate people to afford access to. )



Disadvantages



Although there are many advantages to technology in the classroom there have been arguments as to whether the computer is what is doing all the work and not the students. Because information can be accessed quickly and displayed through multiple mediums there are fears that students might not remember information because they can now look it up elsewhere. There are also people1 who argue that students are losing basic knowledge and reading skills because of their use of technology.

There are arguments that because of all the new technology that there is a loss of communication skills and the ability for people to interact with each other. Since a fairly large amount of the new technology is made for an independent uses there are valid concerns about the loss of interpersonal and cooperation skills that students usually develop within a classroom setting.

the students that do not have as much access to modern technology such as people in lower income situations. Unable to access even the more common technologies such as a computer on a regular basis - puts them even more at a disadvantage because computers are now integrated into every classroom in one way or another - can make doing homework difficult.

References

1 Bauerlein, Mark. The Dumbest Generation. New York: Penguin Group, 2009. Book

2Gulley, Kathleen Patrice. "Pros and Cons of Computer Technology in the Classroom." Sacramento: California State University, 2003

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