Widespread deployment of digital tools and resources is one of the key elements of a bill by the French government to modernise the education system. For the government and many members of the teaching profession, the digital transformation is a major ambition which should serve to make schools more egalitarian: digital technology can address a number of issues in the education system such as reducing drop-out rates and opening up schools to the wider world.
It was with these goals in mind that the National Survey on Digital for Education was conducted in France this year, collecting feedback from teachers, local authorities, charities, parents and students to use as guidelines for future legislation. The first results were published last week.
digital SCHOOL= MORE MOTIVATED STUDENTS?
Digital tools and resources can create a variety of learning situations and as such are valuable educational tools. We recently looked at the twictation or interactive dictation on Twitter, but there are numerous other examples of innovative teaching methods using digital technology, such as the flipped classroom. Students are encouraged to post and share online: at a secondary school near Poitiers, for example, students are invited to create and share their Webfolio, a digital portfolio combining all their classwork.
82% of the teachers and school heads who responded to the survey said that digital technology means students can try, make mistakes and then try again. It creates a more stimulating approach to learning and helps them develop their creativity – 77.8% believe digital allows students to create and produce things themselves and play a more active role in the learning process.
digital TRAINING FOR TEACHERS IS ESSENTIAL
More than nine out of ten education professional would like to have a simple, secure Internet connection in the classroom, and varied, high-quality digital teaching resources, whilst 97.5% would like to have the right equipment to prepare their lessons properly. Other things respondents asked for were a catalogue of dedicated teaching resources and services (95.5%), training in using digital technology in the classroom (93.4 %) and digital technology in general (90.3%) and onsite support on a daily basis (93.3%).
However, teachers are not yet ready for 100% digitalised teaching material: over half of respondents said they would like to keep using traditional text books.
Teachers also believe that digital will open schools up to the outside world, for example by offering easier access to documents and media and a wealth of online resources (94.4%), facilitating international exchanges (85%) and allowing contact with scientific and technological organisations (80.2%).
See the complete results of the National Survey on Digital for Education (in French) online.
Photo credit: Leonardo Augusto Matsuda – Amigos do Planeta – Inclusão Digital é isso aí! / Flickr.com / License CC BY-NC 2.0