Technology Can Hurt Rather than Help Young Students


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New research from McKinsey has found that access to laptops, e-books, and other devices resulted in poorer grades. The survey was based on test scores of 15-year-old students across Europe. The same analysis found that test scores actually improved if the hardware was in the hands of teachers, rather than students.

The results suggest that, while technology may be a distraction if used improperly, in the right hands it offers rich educational rewards.

All technology is not equal according to the report. E-books were universally bad for learning, including outside the EU. Tablets and laptops had an overall negative impact, but desktop computer with internet connections were a huge help under teacher supervision.

McKinsey’s analysis also revealed that a pupil’s mindset was the most important indicator of success. Students who believed that working hard would lead to future success, who felt part of the school, and who were not suffering from anxiety, were far more likely to succeed, regardless of their home environment, or even the teacher’s performance.

Photo: Shutterstock

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