Is technology good or evil? Let us take a very simple example of a matchstick. One can use it to light a lamp or light a fire for cooking. It can also be used to light a fire that burns some one’s home down or a newly wide bride who has not bought in enough dowry to satisfy her in law’s endless greed. The matchstick by itself is just a harmless object. In the hands of a mother lighting the lamp or the cooking fire, it becomes beneficial. The same matchstick in the hands of a small careless child, could prove to be fatal. And when it becomes a tool for the person to burn down a home, or a newly wedded bride, it becomes a tool to kill and destroy.
Technology is like that matchstick, a tool, which on it’s own has no use. It’s when some one owns it, that it becomes a boon or a bane. A doctor could use the CT scan to diagnose a person’s illness and take the necessary action. The same doctor could also use the CT scan to determine whether the unborn child is a female, and if yes, get it aborted. In both cases the CT scan does the same function it is expected to. In the first case it assists in saving a patient’s life, in the second case, it assists in terminating an unborn person’s life. The difference is in the usage, here the culprit is not technology, but the person using it. I can use a knife to cut vegetables or cut a rope, I can use the same knife to murder some one. So who is at fault here, the knife or the owner?
Technology is a boon as long as it is our slave. It can be a powerful tool for transforming learning. It can help affirm and advance relationships between educators and students, reinvent our approaches to learning and collaboration, shrink long-standing equity and accessibility gaps, and adapt learning experiences to meet the needs of all learners. Using technology reduces the work load and helps students to understand subject better. Essentially it is also driving the way that teachers teach and students learn. Technology based learning and assessment systems will be pivotal in improving student learning and generating data that can be used to continuously improve the education system at all levels.
However, technology can also be a hindrance for students. It becomes a bane when the students, who surfs the internet, look for unsavoury subjects. The abuse and misuse of the internet will have far reaching unfavourable effects on life. Allowing the students to surf the internet doesn’t necessarily mean that all the things that they are going to discover are good for their mind and studies.
A serious negative effect of technology on students’ education is the distraction that it may pose within the learning environment. The opportunity to access social network sites and games can tempt students away from planned learning activities. Such distractions can hamper their overall progress and their potential to succeed.
Technology is a key aspect of learning in the schools. Whether we like it or not, technology is everywhere; and in order for our students to survive in post-secondary education and the business world, they must know technology. Our schools, community colleges, and universities should be incubators of exploration and invention. Educators should be collaborators in learning, seeking new knowledge and constantly acquiring new skills alongside their students. Education leaders should set a vision for creating learning experiences that provide the right tools and supports for all learners to thrive