Technology has played a big role in changing the education environment in so many schools which have implemented it. However, not every school or classroom has had the opportunity of using technology in their classrooms or education system. Some of the benefits of using technology in education can include ; easy access to academic information , ability to learn easily which results from the use visual learning in classrooms which is facilitated by technological tools like smart white boards, ability to learn from anywhere.
Technology is a little bit complex, so, some schools and teachers find it difficult to integrate technology in their existing curricula. In most cases these schools take technology as an additional subject but they do not integrate it in already existing subjects. For schools to enjoy the benefits of technology they have to agree and change their curricula, they need to find ways to integrate it with technology, so that in every subject taught, students and teachers find great use of technology. Refusing to learn technological tools and how to use them in the classroom, will leave many schools backward and this can also affect on the grades of students in those schools.
As the world develops, more technological jobs will pop-up; our students have to be prepared for this new era of tech demanding jobs. Most of the jobs we have today will not be worth in 5 – 10 years, technology will have presented us with new opportunities which will be more rewarding than the present jobs. So schools which do not use technology in their classrooms are denying these students the chance to compete tomorrow. Below I have listed some of the Barriers to the Effective Use of Technology in Education:
- Lack of Professional development: To a great extend, the lack of professional development and support has acted as a barrier to the effective use of technology in education. In many schools, teachers feel unprepared to learn and integrate technology in their classrooms. Yet for students, they have the knowledge of using this technology for educational purposes. There is a lack of training programs to teach these teachers on ways they can use technology to simplify their job and also make it easier for their students to learn better. When it comes to remote schools or low level classes, teacher will act as a link between students and technology, because these students are not well informed on how to use technological tools like computers in the classroom. So if teachers have no training skills on using technology for educational purpose, then students will also miss out on these skills. This is a common practice in public schools, because private schools are business entities which are operated on competitive advantage, so they emphasize the use of technology in the class and their teachers are well trained and well equipped with technological tools for education.
But what is stopping teachers in public schools from using technology in classrooms and education in general. Basing on my personal research, it is the lack of technological tools in schools, lack of technological training and support and inadequate professional development.
- Resistance to change: Another barrier of using technology in education is ‘’Resistance to change’’. Some teachers have refused to change from the old way of doing things, and please, do not quote me wrongly, because this is a personal choice which might even cost you your job. And if you’re a teacher reading this article, it means you even know how to use technology, but you have intentionally refused to change the old tactics. Using technology in the classroom can be so demanding during the first phase of introduction because students will always need your help, and this scares many teachers, but in the long run, each student will know what to do, and your work will be simplified. Also teachers and schools give so many excuses for not using technology in their education circular, these excesses include, not having enough computers, not getting enough technical training, then other teachers argue that the process of learning technology and how to integrate it in education take too much time, then there others, who feel that technology might replace them, so instead of losing their jobs and old methodology of teaching, they refuse to use technology in education.
- Lack of Innovation: The lack of innovations has also acted as a barrier To the Effective Use of Technology in Education. Using technological tools requires a certain degree of creativity. Some people learn easily without any help from a technical personal, while others will take a while to master how to use specific technological tools and integrate that experience towards solving a problem. The most challenging thing about technology is that, you do not stop at learning how it works and how to use it. But you must also find ways of integrating it in most of the things you do on a daily basis. So if you learn how to type and save data, you must also find ways on how that skill can help you in other aspects. Technological tools are designed to do more than just one task. Now that our level of learning, understanding and integrating is different, some teachers will shy away from the use of technology for educational purposes.
- Access: The lack of effective access to technological tools has also acted as a great barrier towards the effective use of technology in education. Many schools and teachers have no accesses to technological tools like smart whiteboards and projectors which can be used in visual illustrations in the classroom. Some schools do not have enough computers and they even lack access to internet which can be of a great use in academic research and remote learning.