The effects of technology on students in schools

With around 95 percent of teachers using technology in their classrooms (Nagel, 2019), technology is only becoming overwhelmingly popular in classrooms. According to a study done by Qian Li, approximately 87.3 percent of students supported the use of technology in education, believing it is an effective way to learn (Li). As more and more students and schools are incorporating large amounts of technology, others disprove this idea, believing technology will leave an everlasting negative influence on students. With the differing views on this topic, the overarching question “What effects does the consistent use of technology in schools have on students?”

We think technology in schools is a good idea as it's been proved several times that technology improves focus and grades in schools

Benefits of technology in schools

Technology has been proven several times to benefit students and their grades. In interviews conducted by independent researchers with 606 elementary, middle, and high school teachers, 86 percent of respondents reported that computers improved student academic performance. Another 74 percent reported that technology improved attention in class (Rother, 2003). This study is a bit old so it might not be as reliable as the other studies. In a study conducted by OCED every three years using PISA to test 15-year old's, they found that results in 2018 proved technology rich regions seemed to exhibit higher test scores when compared to areas with restricted access to technology. The study found in the US, students with technology score 17 PISA points higher than those who don’t (Bryant & Child & Dorn, 2020). Together, these pieces of evidence clearly demonstrate that the use of technology in schools will often lead to increased test scores as students may feel more motivated to learn. As mentioned previously in this literature review, the majority of students supported the use of technology in education, believing it is an effective way to learn (Li). With many students believing technology is beneficial to their education, technology does provide many great benefits. For one, technology may make it easier for students to collaborate and save their work (“8 Benefits of Technology in the Classroom”, 2020). The indirect implications of technology within classrooms may also result in worse academic performance for some.

Drawbacks of technology in schools

Despite the conclusive evidence that supported the use of technology in classrooms to boost test scores, studies have also been made public that concludes otherwise. As proven by Vigdor, Ladd, and Martinez in 2014, giving students internet access decreased math test scores by 0.27 of a standard deviation in North Carolina (Chen & Mittal & Sridhar, 2020). In the United States, studies have concluded that fourth-grade students who regularly use technology in schools score 14 points lower on a test that is administered by the federal government when compared to students that lack technological supplies. This difference is so great, that it is compared to an entire year of education (Barshay, 2019). A study published by the Canadian Journal for the Scholarship for Teaching and Learning found approximately 50 of students were constantly distracted by their technology. Despite knowing the negative consequences of browsing the internet and getting distracted by technology, many teens still do it (Hazelrigg, 2019).


Despite the multitude of studies claiming technology harms the academic success of students, many of these studies may be flawed as the evidence given may not be representative of what technology can bring to classrooms. This is because in order to reap the benefits of technology in classrooms, teachers and students should be familiar with technology and how to efficiently utilize it, which plays a crucial role as not understanding the correct usage of certain pieces of technology will clearly hinder its ability to benefit education.

Our Experiment

Now, we could have ust used some existing sources for our lit review and we'd be done, but we still had to conduct an experiment ourselves to test the credibility of the sources we used.

Our experiment was quite simple: we find 2 students with similar gpas, and classes for the accuracy of our experiment, next we will give them upto 10 minutes to study for the same topic in which they will be taking a test on later, but the catch is one will be using a laptop to study and one will be using a textbook to study(The test will be really simple). After they are done studying for, we will give them the same test but they will be seated far from eachother to prevent cheating. Our Independent variable would be technology and our dependent variable would be the scores

The results:
The student with technology to study with got a score of 69/100 and the student without technology got 48/100, both terrible scores but they got very little time to study
Overall, this experiment proved our hypothesis and also proved every other study that claims technology is important in schools

Application of research

How can research summarized in literature review be used in future research? - Our research summarized in our literature review can be used in future research by giving researchers a clearer idea of the pros and cons of technology in classrooms

What additional questions were raised during literature review research? - A question raised during our research for our literature review was whether or not the participants in the studies knew and used technology effectively.

User and Possible Impact – The user is students while the possible impact is a decrease or increase in the use of technology within schools.

How could your research improve; what are the next steps in research? - We could improve our research by fully relying on peer-reviewed sources, which provide more reliable and credible information Our next steps in our research is to perform more detailed and comprehensive experiments of our own.

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