For 20 years or more, pressure has been on advocates of using technology in education to identify and quantify the benefits of doing so.

The author suggests that the time has come to turn the question on its head. He observes that it’s clear that access to computers in the classroom has changed education and, in many cases, improved it. Therefore, the pressure is on the naysayers to explain why technology shouldn’t be used, he says.

Some things have been learned, he points out. The first is that having computers is not the same as using them well. Just as effective pedagogical techniques that work offline take time and well-trained professional educators to implement, so, too, do online techniques. There’s every reason to believe that using computers effectively requires many of the same traits—long-term goals, a curriculum that progresses from skill to skill, constant feedback to students and educators, a supportive community and family, and so on.

If anything, this knowledge indicates that computers must be more integrated into traditional teaching models—the models that have been proven to work—instead of being relegated to courses outside the curriculum.

Achieving this goal, the author writes, will be a substantial challenge. Teacher training is one of the many areas that will need to be revamped and improved.