Pew Research Center published a report on how teachers are using technology at home and in their classrooms. As part of the Internet and American Life survey (which aims to gauge how Americans use technology and the internet as a part of their daily life.
The survey was conducted with middle and secondary instructors across the US, with a special focus on educators involved in the Advanced Placement and National Writing Project. Overall, the findings show that digital technologies have become a central part of teachers’ teaching and professional development. These technologies have also brought along a number of new challenges for teachers, which are detailed in the results below. If you’re interested, you can read the whole report here.
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Women are more likely to repost images found elsewhere on the web than men.
The quality of the teacher workforce in the United States is of considerable concern to education stakeholders and policymakers. Numerous studies show that student academic success depends in no small part on access to high-quality teachers. Many pundits point to the fact that in the United States, teachers tend not to be drawn from the top of the academic-performance distribution, as is the case in countries with higher student achievement, such as Finland, Korea, and Singapore. And the evidence on the importance of teacher academic proficiency generally suggests that effectiveness in raising student test scores is associated with strong cognitive skills as measured by SAT or licensure test scores, or the competitiveness of the college from which teachers graduate.
Policymakers and politicians who wring their hands about the mediocre performance of U.S. students on international math and reading tests have another worry: The nation’s grown-ups aren’t doing much better.
The survey, released Tuesday, measured the literacy, math and computer skills of about 5,000 U.S. adults between ages 16 and 65, and compared them with similar samples of adults from 21 countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OEDC).
Pew found the following:
- 34 percent believe the Internet isn’t relevant to their lives; they have no interest or need
- 32 percent say it’s challenging or frustrating to go online; some of these people are also afraid of “spam, spyware, and hackers”
- 19 percent don’t want or can’t afford to pay for a computer and the associated access cost
- 7 percent “cited a physical lack of availability or access to the Internet”
REVEAL: Some of the most popular cell phone activities in 2013. http://pewrsr.ch/1eUF9Id
Which ones do you do?
"Historically, women have been especially avid users. Between December 2009 and December 2012, women were significantly more likely than men to use social networking sites in nine out of ten surveys we conducted. During this period, the proportion of women who used social media sites was 10 percentage points higher than men on average. When we include earlier surveys and our latest reading (spanning May 2008 through May 2013), the average difference falls slightly to 8%. Currently, three-quarters (74%) of online women use social networking sites."
8%: The average gap between the proportion of men and women who use social media
It’s a woman’s (social media) world | Pew Research
States’ new budgets are providing less per-pupil funding for kindergarten through 12th grade than they did six years ago — often far less. The reduced levels reflect not only the lingering effects of the 2007-09 recession but also continued austerity in many states; indeed, despite some improvements in overall state revenues, schools in around a third of states are entering the new school year with less state funding than they had last year. At a time when states and the nation are trying to produce workers with the skills to master new technologies and adapt to the complexities of a global economy, this decline in state educational investment is cause for concern.
The role of location in digital life is changing.
- 74% of smartphone owners now use their phone to get directions or other info based on their current location.
- 30% of social media users have an account set up to include their location in posts.
- At the same time, there is a drop in the number of smartphone owners who use “check in” location services. 12% of adult smartphone owners say they use a geosocial service to “check in” to certain locations or share their location with friends, down from 18% in early 2012.
Yet even as most smartphone owners use their phones abilities to get location-specific information, data from earlier surveys also shows that mobile users of all ages say they have turned off location-tracking features at some point due to privacy concerns:
- As of September 2012, almost half (46%) of teen app users say they have turned off the location tracking feature on their cell phone or in an app on a phone or tablet because they were worried about other people or companies being able to access that information.
- As of April 2012, in response to a different question, over a third (35%) of adult cell app users said they have turned off the location-tracking feature on their cell phone because they were concerned that other individuals or companies could access that information.
Read more in our new report out today: http://pewrsr.ch/185iqQ9
In 1990, more than 30 percent of computer workers were women. Now it’s just 27 percent.
Read more. [Image: Reuters]
Evidence from two independent sources now shows that, in fact, the graduation rate increased substantially between 2000 and 2010. The improvements were especially pronounced among blacks and Hispanics, who have long been far less likely to complete high school than their white peers.
Yet despite these encouraging trends, substantial graduation-rate gaps along lines of race, income, and gender persist. Moreover, graduation rates in other OECD countries also increased in the past decade. As a result, the U.S. high school graduation rate in 2010 was still below the OECD average.
African-Americans experience more racial mistreatment than any other group, and one of the biggest gaps is in public schools.
The phrase “high quality preschool” has been repeated to the point that it’s become almost meaningless. It’s not, and it’s not hopeless to characterize a high-quality classroom. Further, we don’t have to test every child to spot one. Sabol et al (2013) show that qualities of teachers (e.g. experience) and programs (e.g., parental involvement) may not mean much, but qualities of teacher-student interactions might be what we need.