YouTube Rises Above All Else in Student Learning at Home
- By Dian Schaffhauser
the pandemic, an education technology company found that YouTube
dominated student traffic on school-managed devices during a sample
accounting for more time online than all of the other top-10
most-used domains combined.
analyzed online traffic that went through its servers from March 16
through April 17, when most schools had made the transition to online
learning. For the sake of various comparisons the company also looked
at data specifically between Mar. 9-15, before school closures, and
May 4-10, in the midst of remote learning. GoGuardian produces
software for managing 1-to-1 computing programs in schools.
on the findings, the company reported that more than eight in 10 (84
percent) of the most popular websites were "educational in
nature." However, the authors noted that because students "use
school devices for both educational and personal browsing,"
there's no way to know whether the surfing was always for legitimate
10 most popular education websites visited during the March-April
those comparison weeks in March and May, the percentage of time the
student population spent on YouTube doubled, and that's also when
students appeared to invest more time in YouTube than all of the
other sites combined. The report noted that another 10 percent of the
overall time that students spent online using school devices during
that week in May was consumed by video conferencing.
an additional study of the learning plans posted as of May 13, 2020
for 30 school districts, the research found 87.5 percent of districts
offered asynchronous distance learning, in which teachers posted
assignments or to-do learning tasks for students, who could complete
those at their own pace. When students needed help, the teachers
offered "office hours" or invited them to reach out via
email or phone.
to the school move to online learning, just three in 10 districts had
take-home devices for their students. After schools closed their
physical campuses, that rose to 52 percent; an additional 22 percent
stopped limiting 1-to-1 devices to on-campus use only. Another 16
percent offered computers to families as they expressed the need for
computers. And it was unclear among the remaining schools (31.5
percent) about how they handled device distribution.
results are openly available in a report on
the GoGuardian website.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @schaffhauser.