HowInternet Affect Education
HowInternet Affect Education
Technologyhas proven essential to almost every part of life as statistics showsthat 40 million young people in the United States alone use theinternet extensively on their daily basis, which makes up 62.8percent of the country’s population. The internet has the globalbroadcasting capability, which acts as a mechanism to disseminateinformation and a medium for interaction and collaboration betweenpeople irrespective of geographical location (Tutkun,2011).Thus, it has revolutionized almost every sector in the society fromcommunication, shopping, politics, to education. It is obvious thatthe internet will continue to change various aspects in the society.Luckily, technology reaches students of all ages from elementary,high school, to colleges and universities. Therefore, it has opened aportal to information, and the students have become the biggestbeneficiaries of this free access (Bourne & Moore, 2002).Although most young people have a tendency of using their laptops,computers, and smartphones for online gaming and chatting rather thanresearch, the internet has proven to have positive impacts oneducation through the introduction of online learning, easy access toinformation, and facilitating collaborative and interactive learning.
Theinternet allows easy, free, and fast access to all forms ofinformation. Nowadays, students use the internet to finish theirhomework and conduct further research. For example, books that werealmost impossible to find quickly decades ago are now readilyaccessible via search engines. Besides, there are options to ensurethat students and researchers can access books either directly onlineif the copyright allows or through as local library. On the otherhand, sometimes the school library is outdated or lacks the necessaryinformation the students require thus, they turn to the internet toget the information (Tutkun,2011).Besides, the curriculum keeps on changing to match the changes intechnology and demands in the employment sector. Thus, the booksmight be outdated, but the internet will always have up to dateinformation, which has opened doors for students to conduct furtherresearch and improve their academic knowledge. Moreover, there arerelatively new services provided through the internet, which makesmultimedia freely accessible to all (Tutkun,2011).
Nowadays,higher education is becoming more important as the society isencouraging students to acquire more education. Besides, theincreased competition in the job market is also encouraging people toundertake higher education. However, higher education is veryexpensive, and not every interested person can afford it (Tutkun,2011).Therefore, many students are opting for online degree programs as acheaper alternative to traditional education. The online degreesallow students to participate in classroom discussions, watch videolectures, and complete assignments on their own time. Moreover, theflexible learning environment offered through online education allowsstudents to maintain part-time or full-time jobs making college amore financially viable option (Bourne & Moore, 2002).
Theinternet enables schools to conduct different activities to enhancethe learning process. Students should engage in various activities toacquire the necessary information, knowledge, and experience. Inspite of this, some schools may lack the budget and resources tofinance some of the required activities such as sending students tofield trips related to the course of study (Bourne & Moore,2002). In such a case, it can negatively affect the students’education and learning progress. Fortunately, with the internet,students to attend various activities virtually such as web seminarsoffered by other institutions or the museums. Besides, the internethas enhanced interaction among students in different geographicallocations. Today, it is possible to share information on a globalscale. Moreover, students have access to more learning resources,which levels the playing fields for all students allowing them to beevaluated based upon their efforts (Bourne & Moore, 2002).Additionally, the online discussion boards through social networkingoffer students an effective method to collaborate with theirclassmates, instructors, and colleagues outside the classroom.Therefore, they can benefit from the academic community’scollective experience and wisdom to progress in the academic field.
Onthe other hand, the internet has altered the world of education andrevolutionized the way teachers impart education. The teachers usethe internet to enhance their lessons (Christen,2009).Before the increased use of the internet, the learning environmentwas often restricted to labs, lecture sessions and faculty officehours. However, today educators can publish their lesson contents,notes, and study resources on the internet. Hence, the students canmodify their educational experiences to fit their personal needs andpreferences. Besides, it allows the students to revisit lectures,quizzes and notes as often and necessary thus, promotingcomprehensive understanding (Christen,2009).The internet has been helpful even to the elementary teachers. Forexample, it has given teachers the opportunity to expose the childrento a variety of education games accordingly, instead of using thetraditional methods such as playing boards, the students can usecounting, spelling, and other early educational lessons through theinternet based programs, which make learning even more fun.
Tolearn more about the effects of the internet on education, Iconducted an interview with a teacher who has used both thetraditional teaching methods and only recently started integratingthe internet into her lesson plans. She indicated that it makes itpossible to share lesson plans with her colleagues all over the worldas long as they have access to the internet. Besides, she can searchfor lesson plans when necessary and adjust them to fit the need ofindividual students. The teacher informed me that free lesson sitesmake her work easier as she can now access course materials thatcomplement lessons in almost any discipline. Besides, she prefersusing the internet since it is an excellent tool for inquiry-basedlearning. She indicated that the teachers are now using interactivemethods and have access to a wider pool of information, which hasmade the learning process very transformative. My intervieweeexplains that she spends a lot of time inside and outside theclassroom whether writing lesson plans, grading papers, dealing withdiscipline, and teaching. “Therefore, the last I want is spendingmore time meeting the students to revise assignments or give extrainstructions on the lesson,” Says the teacher. As such, theinternet has proven beneficial by decreasing the time taken away fromlesson plans and other activities. Besides, she indicates that somestudents take an interest in education when they are exposed totechnology as opposed to when she is using only the traditionallearning methods.
Nonetheless,the internet also poses some disadvantages in education as it hasforced teachers and students to face numerous new challenges. Theteacher I interviewed repeatedly warned of the negative effects asshe says that the educators must be alert to the dangers the internetposes so that they can avoid those potential risks. Various aspectsof the internet keep on changing, and everything is fast. Forexample, websites streamline information and deliver in quick bursts,which make it easy to comprehend. The popular clips hardly last morethan two minutes to ensure that viewers do not get bored. It hasreduced the attention span significantly, which means that somestudents may find it difficult to follow an in-depth discussion orstay focused throughout a regular class time, which makes it harderfor the teacher to incorporate the internet and use their lessonplans (Issa, Isaias & Kommers, 2015). The internet alsointroduces the challenge of students cheating. The vast knowledgearchived on the internet is advantageous, but it also makes it easyfor students to access answers or essays for any subject. Knowingthat the answers are available online can prove tempting for somestudents, which leads to academic fraud, rampant cheating, andplagiarism (Issa, Isaias & Kommers, 2015). Although the educatorshave taken countermeasures to curb such behaviors some students mayattempt to avoid such safeguards using message boards and socialmedia to share class information. Accordingly, it contributes to aculture of cheating and lack of integrity in education that did notexist on such as scale before the development of the internet (Bourne& Moore, 2002).
Inconclusion, the internet has become a tool in the education fieldeven as many students use it mainly for socializing. It has a vastarray of information, which ensures that every student has access tothe kind of information required in any desired field. The internethas facilitated learning by offering greater opportunities to conductresearch, engage in various learning activities, which wouldotherwise be expensive. Students and teachers benefit from the easyand fast access to information as well as the opportunity to shareknowledge globally. Hence, it brings the classroom, teachers, andstudents on one platform. Over the years, the internet hascontributed significantly to students obtaining a college degree.Besides, it gives an equal chance for all students to progress ineducation regardless of race, age, gender, language, geographicallocation, or any disability. However, if the internet is misused, itcan result in negative impacts as students may use it to teach inexaminations and assignments. Although it has disadvantages, thepositive effects on education outweigh the negative ones, if it isused wisely.
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Bourne,J. R., & Moore, J. C., (Eds.). (2002). Elementsof quality online education: Learning effectiveness, costeffectiveness, access, faculty satisfaction, student satisfaction.Needham, MA: Sloan Consortium.
Christen,A. (2009). Transforming the Classroom for Collaborative Learning inthe 21st Century. Techniques:ConnectingEducation and Careers,84(1), 28-31.
Issa,T., Isaias, P., & Kommers, P. A. M. (2015). SocialNetworking and Education: Global Perspectives.Cham: Springer.
Tutkun,O. (2011). Internet Access, Use and Sharing Levels Among StudentsDuring the Teaching-Learning Process. TheTurkish Online Journal of Educational Technology,10(3).