4 Ways Connected Tech Enhances Education
The Internet and Your Devices are a Dynamic Duo
Laptops, tablets and smart boards—they’re just three internet connected devices growing faster, sleeker and more versatile with each new generation. And in the modern classroom, they’re becoming almost as common as backpacks and No. 2 pencils.
Connected technology has had a transformative and positive impact on education as a whole. Technology—known as edtech in schools—has reliably served as a bridge linking students to a world of learning and knowledge that’s more accessible and interactive than ever.
These devices have become integral tools from elementary school to higher education, enhancing teaching and learning experiences. They provide students and educators with access to a range of digital resources, interactive content and online collaboration platforms. Laptops and tablets enable personalized learning, research and project-based activities, while smartboards facilitate dynamic and engaging lessons through interactive displays and multimedia integration.
But wait, there’s more
It’s not just the devices making all these enhanced learning opportunities possible. The internet connection powering these devices has an important place, too. Here’s a deeper look at four ways that high speed internet has enhanced the educational experience.
1. The student-teacher connection is stronger
One of the internet’s greatest strengths in the classroom is the ability to connect teachers and students. With a lesson plan that integrates technology, teachers can open up their classrooms to a wealth of knowledge and educational resources. As students have access to personal devices, study materials, interactive lessons, educational quizzes and tutorials all can be enhanced with digital resources.
Class websites give students the ability to download assignments, study materials and watch supplemental videos. A classroom blog can serve as a study guide, homework aid or resource for a lesson recap. With email and messaging apps, students can interact with class members, share their work progress, ask questions and access additional learning resources.
2. Interaction improves student engagement
Internet-enabled technology makes learning a more active process. Rather than sitting back and passively listening to a lecture, (though this teaching method is valuable in its own way) technology encourages students to actively engage in a lesson. With a laptop or tablet at their desk, students can interact with digital models and videos, navigate websites and browse the internet for deeper research. When students take an active, hands-on role in learning, it leads to better information retention and inspires the desire to explore topics in greater depth.
3. Students are better prepared for the digital world
A student’s future employer is going to value teamwork, problem-solving and collaborative skills. Students who advance through school with a real-world understanding of technology—the basics of Wi-Fi, conducting online research and how to use apps and software will be better positioned for success in the professional world.
4. Online and distance learning wouldn’t be possible
The e-learning industry has been growing for the past decade. During the pandemic, it rose sharply. People want the opportunity to gain new skills on their own time. Not only is the cost structure more convenient for some students, working professionals have the opportunity to gain training, certifications, and valuable career-enhancing skills on a schedule that suits them.
Did you know? There is federal help for broadband access
Here’s an additional benefit that districts should know about. The federal E-Rate program provides reimbursements for the cost of providing high-speed internet services in eligible schools and libraries. The program, administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) subsidizes various telecommunications infrastructure for schools and libraries, including network equipment, hardware and IT support.
The bottom line
Connected devices and the internet have had a powerfully transformative and positive impact on education. As the internet advances and technology innovates, the forward momentum continues. Beneficial changes are still happening as a result of technological innovations and advancements in internet deployment, bandwidth and speed.