Recent studies and surveys of teachers, for example, are revealing that new technologies may be hindering the learning process. A 2012 Pew Research Center survey reported that almost 90 percent of teachers surveyed said that new technologies were resulting in an “easily distracted generation with short attention spans.”

Another survey of teachers, by Common Sense Media, had a similar finding: 71 percent of teachers indicated that they believed that “entertainment media” (including the Internet, texting, iPods, and video games) was damaging attention spans either “a lot” or “somewhat.”

Other surveys have found a striking difference of views about technology in the classroom between school administrators and students and parents.

A 2011 Project Tomorrow survey of 416,000 students, parents and educators reported that 56 percent of middle school students and 59 percent of high-school students indicated that they would like to use their own personal mobile devices as learning tools in the classroom, with considerable support from parents; however, 52 percent of school administrators said that they do not permit students to use personal mobile devices in class.

How will these administrators react in the not-too-distant future if robotic teaching aids become available?