Ed Tech Trends
Ed Tech Use Continues Growth Beyond the Peak of the Pandemic
Google, Kahoot! And Zoom are the most-used tools of 2020–2021.
The use of digital tools in K–12 is continuing to grow well after
the pandemic's peak. During the 2020–2021 school year, districts in
the United States each used a mind-boggling 1,449 different digital
tools on average per month.
That average breaks down to 967 tools used by educators in each district and
1,134 used by students. The overall figure is up a substantial 9% over the spring 2020 ed tech adoption surge during the frantic exodus to remote learning as schools shut down for
in-person instruction nationwide. And it's up 52% over 2019-2020
This is according to a new
report from LearnPlatform, which has been tracking ed tech usage
since 2017. The data for 2020–2021 came from more than 44 billion
"engagement events" by students and educators. A total of
8,616 individual digital tools were measured. More than
250,000 educators were and 2 million students were included in the
usage data. LearnPlatform publishes an ed tech effectiveness system
(also called LearnPlatform), which is used by schools and districts
for insights into the effectiveness of the technologies they use,
including safety, cost-efficiency, efficacy for learners and
“No matter the key focus of the technology, we've seen a steady
increase in the number of digital tools used in classrooms, whether
virtual or in-person. Tech-enabled learning is here to stay and now
is the time to ensure that ed tech is effective in supporting
teaching and driving student outcomes,” said Karl Rectanus, CEO and
Founder of LearnPlatform, in a statement released to coincide with
the report. “While we focus on equipping districts and states to
improve the safety, equity, efficiency and effectiveness of their
learning environments, this analysis provides an important broader
perspective to help K-12 decision-makers.”
Among individual technologies that made the 2020–2021 top-40 list,
Google holds the top 6 positions: Google Docs, Google Slides,
YouTube, Google Drive, Google Forms and Google Classroom, in that
order. Google also holds two other positions in the top 10: Google
Sites at No. 8 and Google Sheets at No. 10.
Only two non-Google digital tools made the top 10: Kahoot!, which
came in at 7, and Zoom, which came in at 9.
New to the top 40 this year were Jamboard (No. 22), Pear Deck (No.
28) and Booklet (No. 37). Three other tools returned to the top 40
after falling off last year, according to LearnPlatform: History.com
(No. 29), Encyclopedia Britannica (No. 30) and MIT App Inventor (No.
37) returned to the list after dropping off last year’s list which
focused on the months after widespread school closures related to
complete report is freely available on LearnPlatform's site.
Additional details beyond the basic report, including top-10 products
in each category, are available with registration.