Research

Teachers, Parents, Students Want More Digital Learning Materials

The increasingly technology-centric behaviors of students, teachers and parents has changed the traditional model of K–12 education, according to a new report from Deloitte that seeks to better understand how digital transformation is impacting the education ecosystem, both inside and outside of the classroom.

The inaugural “Digital Education Survey,” conducted by Deloitte’s Technology, Media & Telecommunications practice, looks at more than 2,800 responses from teachers, parents and students. The study found that nearly half (42 percent) of all classrooms use at least one digital device daily. Laptops are used the most frequently in classrooms (56 percent of the time in a typical week), followed by desktops (54 percent) and tablets (51 percent). Consequently, textbooks are likely in their last days, as the majority of teachers (75 percent) believe digital content will completely replace printed textbooks within the next 10 years.

Outside of the classroom, almost all students (90 percent) use digital learning materials at home. Most students (75 percent) are interested in spending time outside the classroom on topics they cover in class. Parents and teachers support this interest, with 88 percent of parents and 84 percent of teachers “interested in having more at-home digital content available to supplement what’s being taught in school,” according to the report.

When it comes to the types of digital learning materials used in the classroom, online educational videos (67 percent), apps (65 percent), websites (56 percent) and games (52 percent) are the most common, with games and apps more prevalent in pre-K–5th grade classrooms.

Other key findings include:

  • Of the 90 percent of students using digital learning materials at home, two-thirds start by age 5;
  • 74 percent of teachers use digital learning materials to engage their students; and
  • 4 in 10 teachers say their school is “behind the curve” when it comes to technology adoption and implementation, citing a lack of funds at the district-level (63 percent) and not enough devices (60 percent).

The full 2016 Digital Education Survey is available on the Deloitte site.

About the Author

Sri Ravipati is Web producer for THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at sravipati@1105media.com.

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