Head to Head: Is technology a tool or for fools? (pro)

Continually improving technology is a frightening concept. When we think of improved technology we think of the stuff of sci fi movies, a world complete with hovercrafts and mechanized feelings and robots taking over the world. But in truth, improving technology can result in some seriously positive outcomes, especially when it comes to education.

When technology first came about as a potential educational tool, schools began to incorporate it in very removed ways. Computer labs were introduced as places where would leave class for an hour and spend time developing technology based skills, like typing and art. But now, more than ever, it has become an integral part of the classroom, and it has afforded students more opportunities than we could have ever imagined as possible.

Chromebooks litter classrooms, projector screens line the walls, and students utilize phones and computers to assist them in their class and homework. While this might seem daunting, it truly is a wonderful new world of education we are looking at. People feared that giving students calculators would limit their understanding of basic math or that having computers at their fingertips would inhibit them from understanding how to do things from the beginning, but that simply isn’t the case. Outfitting students with calculators has enabled them to jump into much more complex math, giving them a much better education than they would have afforded. Offering them computers has made the bounds of the world and the potential for what they might learn limits. Hours that would have been wasted in a library looking for basic facts are reallocated towards time spent broadening horizons and making better connections.

Giving students technology doesn’t keep them from the world around them, it plugs them into it, giving them an opportunity to be a part of way more facets of the world than would have ever been possible. Technology is the gift of culture, learning and humanity, it simply comes in a slightly unconventional digitized package.