Classroom management software, e-learning solutions growing in popularity

school-surveyThree-quarters of schools in a recent survey say they currently use or plan to use e-learning software, and two-thirds of teachers and staff say they currently use or plan to use classroom management software.

Educators were surveyed for The Changing Classroom: Perspectives from Students and Educators on the Role of Technology study, from information technology trade association CompTIA.

“These tools facilitate online homework, accommodate students out for extended sick periods and make online collaboration between students and teachers easier,” said Carolyn April, senior director, industry analysis, CompTIA. “In many ways the education process is mirroring the way corporate America functions: remote access capabilities, teacher and student mobility and a 24/7 availability environment.”

Indeed, technology is pervasive in today’s classrooms and school administrative offices. Longstanding, traditional technologies – printers, scanners, desktop PCs and A/V equipment – have near universal usage rates. The high incidence of wireless network access in the classroom – 85 percent currently have it – suggests that mobile devices are fast becoming the preferred and primary computing tools for students and teachers alike.

(Next page: How students feel about gaming and mobile apps)

“The influence of new technology is also reflected in changing teaching methods,” said Anna Matthai, manager, research and market Intelligence, CompTIA. “Nearly half of elementary school teachers and one in five high school teachers incorporate game-based learning in the classroom.”

When it comes to learning aids, female students express a strong preference for mobile e-learning apps while male students prefer more gaming-based learning simulations.

“This serves as a reminder that each student may have different preferences when it comes to learning,” April said. “It’s not always possible to customize the learning experience for each student, but technology often allows for a degree of customization not found with other learning modalities.”

Lagging in school technology adoption can have negative impacts, the CompTIA study found. For example:

  • 43 percent of teachers and staff say it contributes to a feeling of falling behind in a digital economy.
  • 25 percent say it leads to lower staff and teacher productivity.
  • 22 percent feel it contributes to lower student achievement.

Schools also wrestle with the financial implications of expanding their use of technology. For example, the initial costs of adoption and ongoing subscription and usage fees associated with certain technologies top the list of obstacles to broader adoption.

CompTIA’s The Changing Classroom: Perspectives from Students and Educators on the Role of Technology is based on two online surveys conducted in September 2014. In one, 400 U.S. educators and administrators in the K-12 sector surveyed; in the second, 1,000 middle school and high school students were questioned. The complete report is available at http://www.comptia.org/insight-tools.

Material from a press release was used in this report.

About the Author:

Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura