Technology integration is ’employing the Internet, computers, CD-ROMs, interactive media, satellites, teleconferencing, and other technological means in instruction to support, enhance, motivate and create learning’. Shelly, Cashman, and Gunter (2008) define technology integration as the combination of all technology parts, such as hardware and software, together with each subject-related area of the curriculum to enhance learning.
According to Jolene Dockstader (2008), technology integration is the use of technology tools in general content area in education in order to allow student to apply computer skills and technology skill in order to learn and solve problems.
Technology has transformed the way we think, work, and play. Technology, when integrated into the curriculum, transforms the learning process. More and more studies show that technology integration in the curriculum develops students’ learning processes and outcomes. Teachers who know computers as problem-solving tools change the way they teach. They move from a behavioural approach to a more constructivist approach. Technology and interactive multimedia are more helpful to project-based learning. Students are involved in their learning using these powerful tools, and can become makers and critics instead of just consumers.
The future of the educational system is almost determined by the advance of technology. Some educators are against the trends of implementing education technology tools and applications in every single aspect of the schooling systems, mainly because it is believed that technology is a source of interference for studies. However, proper technology integration guides students towards greater understanding of all concepts covered in class.
The teaching approaches based on educational technology can be described as ethical practices that enables the students learning and boost their ability, productivity, and performance. Technology integration in education motivates positive changes in teaching methods on international level. Some people are still wondering whether they should start on different apps and tools or not. Amongst other things, technology integration must meet a broad range of educational goals and needs. It must also be available to a diversity of leaners, permit sharing and helpful deeds and have necessities assessment and evaluation.
Advantages of technology integration.
Technology makes teaching easier.
Technology has the power of presenting theoretical reason in a manner that students can understand; you can discover a way of presenting tough concepts that makes the concepts clear for every learner. Teachers can make use of audio visual presentation, this will help the students to understand exactly how the knowledge is applied in practice. You can make the use of projectors and computers presentation to deliver any type of lesson or instruction and improve the level of understanding within the class.
Technology helps teachers track students’ progress
The teacher is no longer limited to a plain old diary and notes about every student. Nowadays teachers can rely on platforms and tools to keep track of the individual successes of students. Schools can develop modified software that will serve the purpose of keeping students’ progress and teacher progress.
Improved Retention Rate
Student views in the study believe that technology helps them preserve information better. According to Janelle Cox (2016), these students may be on to something. Eighteen 2nd grade students were tested to complete a Power Point project about an animal. Sixteen out of the 18 students remembered more facts about the animal after finishing the presentation. These results show that technology indeed helps students to remember what they learn.
Technology Helps Students Learn at Their Own Pace
Today’s technology enables students to learn at their own pace. For example, almost all apps allow for modified instruction. Students can learn according to their skills and needs. This form of teaching is also great for the teacher because it gives him/her the time to work individually with students who may be struggling.
Technology Connects with Students
Technology occupies an important place within students’ lives. When they are not in school, just about everything that they do is connected in some way to technology. By integrating technology into the classroom, teachers are changing the way they used to teach (lectures six hours a day) and providing students with the apparatuses that will take them into the 21st century.
Technology changes by the minute, and as an educators we need to keep up with the times in order to best prepare our students for this ever-changing world that we live in. While we just saw how integrating technology into the classroom has its benefits, it’s important to note that traditional learning processes are just as important. Take time to learn about each element of ed-tech that you will fit into your classroom. When you do, you will find that technology can have a profound impact on your students learning.
Make learners to be engaged in school activities
Most of the learners have the technology apparatuses at home so it becomes easier for them to relate with the technology. According to George foundation (2007) states that technology in the classroom is something that is used to install love for learning on the learners.
Technology makes more distant learning more accessible than ever:
Internet makes it easier to get any type of information at any time. Distance learning is one of the trending learning methods. Virtual lessons are slowly trending and taking the place of traditional method. Students can organise their time in a way that works for them and they can easily gain the knowledge they are interested in.
Despite increasingly widespread adoption of technologies in virtually every aspect of education, important challenges are preventing widespread effective implementation. According to researchers, though some of those challenges are systemic and some related to the technologies themselves, teachers and education leaders share in the blame as well.
Key among all challenges is the lack of sufficient, on-going professional development for teachers who are required to integrate new technologies into their classrooms yet who are unprepared or unable to understand new technologies.
“All too often, when schools mandate the use of a specific technology, teachers are left without the apparatuses (and often skills) to effectively integrate the new skills into their teaching methods,” according to MJ Eady (2013). “The consequences are that the new investments are underutilized, not used at all, or used in a way that mimics an old process rather than inventing new processes that may be more appealing for students.”
Resistance to change.
Resistance to technology comes in many forms, but one of the key resistance challenges identified in the report is “comfort with the status quo.” According to the researchers, teachers and school leaders often see technological research as outside the scope of their job accounts.
MOOCs and other new models for schooling.
New in this year’s report, new models for teaching and learning are providing “unique competition to traditional models of schooling.” In particular, the MOOC (massive open online course) — probably the hottest topic in higher education right now — was identified as being “at the forefront” of debates about new modes of delivering education.
Delivering informal learning.
Rigid lecture and test models of learning are failing to challenge students to experiment and engage in informal learning. But, according to David Nagel (2013), chances for such informal learning can be found in non-traditional classroom models, such as flipped classrooms, which allow for a blending of formal and informal learning.
Failures of personalized learning.
Apparently there’s a gap between the vision of delivering modified, distinguished instruction and the technologies available to make this possible. So while teachers seem to see the need for modified learning, they aren’t being given the apparatuses they need to accomplish it, or adequate apparatuses simply don’t exist.
Failure to use technology to deliver effective formative assessments.
According to S Maughan (2012), assessment is an important driver for educational practice and change, and over the last years we have seen a welcome rise in the use of creative assessment in educational practice. However, there is still an assessment gap in how changes in curricula and new skill demands are implemented in education; schools do not always make necessary changes in assessment practices as a result of these changes. Simple applications of digital media apparatuses, like webcams that allow non-disruptive peer observation, offer significant promise in giving teachers timely feedback they can use.
Lack of hardware and guidance to use them:
Schools are still not sure as to what type of computers and other technological devices they should use. Institutions need to understand their constraint and work accordingly. Availability of devices is important for proper and smooth working without any difficulties or limitations.
Institutions and teachers need to prepare themselves to make students work together on one device as well as let them work individually on one device. Also there is a need for proper and timely guidance that should be given to teachers for effective use of technology.
Students will know more than me attitude
Students today are more active and pro when it comes to technical things. Teachers are afraid of the potential technology holds and the power of knowledge students can get with it. This attitude that students may know more than me makes teachers doubtful and backs them up. Instead, teachers should interact and engage with other students and try to learn along with them. Teachers also have to become a learner in order to enjoy the benefits of this mix.
Fear of technology
Educators have this Fear of the unknowns with new technologies. They are Afraid to experiment with new technologies. Also, this thought of having to learn it all at once slides them away from the idea of integrating technology. Thinking that a technology instructor must have all answers is one other reason that leads them to get away from the idea.
Lack of training opportunities and rigid teaching models:
Educators aren’t provided with sufficient training and accurate technical support. With so many roles to play, there is shortage of time to practice with new and ever-changing technologies. The already existing teaching models are rigid to be transformed.
Technology can and does enhance the performance of educators, professors, and entire school and university systems. Basic skills for the students and educators of the 21st century skills will include basic literacy in the subject areas but in addition, students also need basic scientific, economic, and digital literacy.
To understand the benefit of technology use for learning teachers need to be able to appreciate the benefits of technology as a tool for learning. They need to view the tool, as beneficial, enabling their students and themselves to perform their jobs more effectively. Classrooms must support learning environments that reflect an understanding of what keeps children in keen quest of knowledge