No more pencils and wire-bound notebooks in Kirkwood Elementary School teacher Nancy Fotsch's fifth-grade classroom. These 22 Coralville, Iowa, students are among a select group in the Iowa City, Monticello, and Cedar Rapids school districts taking part in a high-tech research project to evaluate the effectiveness of laptop computers in the classroom.

A team of researchers at the University of Iowa wants to see what impact the laptops have on the students' learning habits and on how teachers instruct their students.

"We want to see if students become less dependent on the teacher and more independent in how they use the computer,"


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