How the Internet Has Influenced Education

Aug 19, 2019 by

The role of the Internet in the modern lifestyle cannot be overemphasized. From serving as a medium of information to connecting people, the Internet has done it all. In particular, social media has shaped most aspects of the present age living. Let’s take the impact of social media on education. It has brought about revolutionary changes in which people link with each other. Students use social media websites like Facebook to discuss course concepts, conduct group studies, and share notes with each other.

As a powerful medium, the Internet has influenced the educational system in both positive and negative ways. The effect the students have depends upon the way they use the Internet. This article elaborates both kinds of results.

History of the Internet Impact on Education

Computers were incorporated in the traditional classroom setup from the early 1980s. However, the technology was limited, and teachers used software packages to enhance students’ practice and learning sessions. Most teachers in the US had computers in their classrooms by the start of the 1990s. They used the computers to present lectures and demonstrate course concepts to the students.

Use of the Internet particularly became rampant in the educational institutions by the late 1990s. Many post-secondary educational programs based on the Internet were introduced that provided the students with the facility of online education. Nowadays, the course is fundamentally designed in a way that it’s oriented around the Internet. The schools have online platforms and databases that they use to monitor students’ attendance, distribute course material, and evaluate students’ performance.

Positive Influences of the Internet on Education

The internet has connected people strongly. The powerful communication system has affected education quite positively. Teachers are increasingly adapting the curriculum to the applications of the Internet, which foster the content standards mandated by the state. People can now continue their academic career without having to compromise their jobs. Hence, students get more flexibility of schedule and can keep on learning at their own pace.

Use of the Internet makes the libraries accessible for students from all over the world. Students use the tools of communication to conduct research, complete complex school projects and develop critical analysis skills. Using Internet-based technology in the modern educational setup is not only a choice, but it’s also actually a need. Only students trained in such a way are competent enough to be productive in a highly dynamic, challenging, and intensively technological work environment.

Negative Ways in which the Internet Has Influenced Education

Many of the negative influences of the Internet are very hard to deter. Take the example of students’ continuous presence on social media. Students keep using WhatsApp and social media websites in the classroom when they should be concentrating on the lecture. Socializing, for many people, is the most preferred activity on the Internet. Sometimes, it gets challenging for a teacher to get the students focused on the lecture.

Students tend to make inappropriate use of the Internet to complete their academic tasks. Let’s say a student gets an essay writing task. He gets it written from a professional writer without making any effort to write it himself. The teachers have no way of knowing whether students wrote the essays by themselves or got them written from someone else.

The Internet has, in a way, reduced people’s tendency to concentrate or focus upon one thing. So much happens over the Internet all the time and so fast that students are continuously browsing one kind of information after another. Persistent and uninterrupted use of the Internet for long hours has developed such a style of information seeking in the students, that they find the traditional classroom lectures annoying. They are used to a dynamic environment where a lot happens every passing minute. Having to attend a long lecture after such a routine reduces their capacity to focus.

Many students who use the Internet all the time have adopted a sedentary lifestyle. They keep checking their WhatsApp messages, emails, and Facebook comments on their phones. If not that, they are spending a lot of time watching videos on Youtube. All this has drawn people away from a healthy routine of workout and physical activity. This affects students’ performance in education as well because learning is inherently related to optimal functioning of mind and body.

The Internet has both positive and negative effects to offer. It’s up to a student to make the right choices. It’s entirely possible for a learner to get all positive results and deter the negative ones and vice versa.

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