6 Common Misconceptions About Online Education

6 Common Misconceptions About Online Education

What usually comes to mind when someone mentions school? Some would probably say they think of teachers, and some would mention typical blackboards and difficult math problems. But school nowadays is much more than that. Considering the ubiquitous technological development, education has certainly not remained unaffected. Technology in schools is a new reality, and some form of online education has already reached millions of students worldwide.
Whether the learning is completely computer-based or hybrid, the surge of online education certainly comes with its share of doubts and distrust. Will the children know how to communicate in real life? Will it even worsen their already worrying screen time? And these are only a few of the big questions surrounding using Educational Technology (Edtech). What are some of the widespread myths waiting to be debunked?


Myth #1: Online Learning Augments the Differences Between Students

Thanks to technology, knowledge is always only a few clicks away. May it be taking online classes or watching educational videos – endless dimensions of knowledge are now all around us. The ways of imparting knowledge without regard for students’ background or social status are practically limitless. Modern tools enable teaching in ways understandable and accessible to all.

online education

Additionally, online education also seems to lessen students’ differences from the teachers’ perspective. Technology in terms of virtual learning gives them the option of thoroughly educating students, considering their ability levels and any special needs. Is someone a visual or an auditory learner? Modern technological solutions solve even that. Teachers can customize students’ activities, pick various types of media, and adjust the learning process so that no one gets left behind.

Myth #2: Excessive Technology Use Damages Child-teacher Relationships

Clear communication is one of the fundamental foundations of successful classwork, and technological solutions permit just that. Students can communicate with their teachers and classmates in individual or group chats. Technology by itself surely isn’t enough to independently carry the learning experience, but online education creates an optimal setting where students can seek help, and the teachers can ceaselessly perform their pedagogical duties in a way that significantly surpasses the classic learning experience.

online education

Myth #3: Using Technology in Schools Will Only Worsen the Children’s Screentime

It is known that children today spend a lot of time watching screens. According to the American Academy (AACAP), children aged 8-12 spend 4-6 hours a day watching or using screens, and teens up to 9 hours. Considering the data, the children’s screen time should be managed, but the time used for educational purposes should not suffer at the expense of less important free-time activities. Hence, parents should limit the time children spend in front of the screens and help them develop healthy media use habits.

Properly guided and regular smart technology usage can teach children to navigate the digital world and prepare them to one day become digital citizens. By using modern technologies, they can become current in the tech trends they’ll once be expected to use as technically literate adults. But again, time spent on educational activities is not equal to time casually surfing the web or playing games, which should be limited and supervised.

Myth #4: Online Education Is All About Technology

In planning children’s screen time, we have to consider that implementing Edtech does not necessarily equal students spending their whole school day locked in front of their screens. Technology does not impose but instead opens possibilities. The time spent in front of their screens for educational purposes is certainly well thought of by the teachers – who specialize in pedagogy – and is only a part of learning.

online education

Myth #5: Online Education Is not as Demanding as its Traditional Counterpart

Online education follows the same curricula that meet the state standards. While it might be true that flexibility and working with minimal distractions sometimes make online classes look easier, that is simply not the case. Just like traditional schools, virtual classes follow comprehensive curricula while allowing students to learn at their own pace and in a way most fitting for them.

Myth #6: Children in Online Education Lack Soft Skills Because There Are no Opportunities to Socialize

Because online education does not present a full day of staring at the screen, the communication between schoolmates remains the same. They probably do spend some time virtually chatting with one another on educational software programs, but they would surely do the same if such technology were not directly incorporated into classwork. And during the lessons, activities like virtual group work also allow for normal socializing and developing much-needed social skills. 

So, besides the usual time together, like taking lunch breaks and attending extracurricular activities, the students can even use Edtech to further their relations. They can still hang out, run around, and go on field trips while participating in modern, student-comes-first education.

SOURCES

[1] Screen Time and Children

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