Ron Kind: A Flawed Measure of Ed Tech

A recent study on the impact of software on test scores fails to capture the profound impact technology is having on education .

by Ron Kind

In our increasingly global marketplace, how to effectively prepare our kids to compete in a 21st-century economy is the crucial question facing education in America.

The tools we use to do this are currently at the center of debate. The U.S. Education Dept. recently released a study that found educational software has no measurable impact on student achievement. Judging by scores on standardized tests, there were no statistically significant differences between students who used reading and math software and those who didn't, according to the research. The finding raises the question whether this nation should only invest in tools whose effectiveness can be measured through test scores.

The answer to that question should be no. This study attempts to show the ineffectiveness of educational technology. Instead it simply reveals the Bush Administration's tunnel vision on the uses and value of it.

The benefits education technology offers students go beyond merely passing core-curricular tests. With it, students are gaining the technology skills and knowledge they will need to compete in the 21st-century economy. While ensuring that our students are proficient in reading, math, and science is critical to their academic and employment futures, their ability to use technology tools, mine the resources of the Internet, and collaborate virtually with peers around the world are skills that high-paying employers seek as well.

Read more @ Business Week.

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