The world has transformed over the years as people have embraced modernity. It should be noted that the Internet has been very instrumental in the changes that have been witnessed around the world. In fact, the Internet now plays an extremely important role in almost all aspects of living in the contemporary society. Education is among the areas that have undergone massive transformation over the years. Recent developments have shown that the Internet is now an integral part of the modern-day education, and its use continues to increase. While the use of the Internet continues to spread, it arouses varying reactions of people living in different parts of the world. Some people have expressed their support for the use of the Internet in schools, while others have risen in protest against this trend. This research paper explores how the Internet has become an important part of modern education. In addition, the paper examines the benefits, as well as, the negative effects of the Internet use in education.
The Internet as an integral part of modern education
Changes in education have seen the Internet become an important tool in education. Education is concerned with the acquisition of knowledge; this process has been made easier in the face of technological advancements, and more so in the form of the Internet. The Internet has emerged as a tool for communication and exchange of information, which are crucial activities in education. Whereas the acquisition of knowledge has always taken place even through traditional methods of instruction, the Internet has taken it to a completely new level. The Internet has created a platform that facilitates collaboration and sharing for educational purposes. For this reason, communication and exchange of information in the school setting has been intensified. It has become possible for people from different parts of the world to exchange a great deal of information within a short time. Therefore, it is evident that the Internet has been designed in line with what education seeks to achieve, which makes the Internet an integral part of modern-day education.
The Internet has also emerged to be an integral part of modern education because it supports the new culture that is based on increased freedom of the access to knowledge. The Internet provides an environment that is believed to be socially rich. Many educators are of the opinion that such an environment is enriching to the learners. The use of the Internet in education has made it easy for people to access knowledge in different areas of specialization beyond immediate environments where people live. This has largely been possible because much information is contained on the Internet, most of which is either free or available at a small price. Therefore, the Internet has become an integral part of modern education because of its capacity to support and facilitate activities that expand learners’ social environment.
Benefits that accrue from the use of the Internet in school
The fact that Internet use in education has taken root indicates that it has come with a great deal of benefits, which have been realized in education. First, it should be noted that the Internet has gone a long way to break geographical limits as far as education is concerned. It has been herein mentioned that because of the use of the Internet for educational purposes, people are no longer limited to only accessing knowledge in their immediate environment. Instead, learners can access knowledge that they would not be able to access without the Internet because of distance constraints. The learners can exchange information with their foreign counterparts through the Internet, which allows them to learn from other people’s experiences. Learners can also pursue their education in educational institutions that are located far away. This practice is widespread especially in institutions of higher learning. The benefit of eliminating distance constraints is what has led to the expansion of learners’ social environments.
The Internet reduces the time constraint involved in the acquisition of knowledge. In the past, people spent much time trying to find different academic materials. Many teachers and learners had to travel to libraries in order to access a variety of academic materials that were not available in their homes or schools. It should also be noted that it takes a great amount of time to peruse different books as one looks for relevant information. This challenge has been reduced, if not eliminated, because teachers and learners now spend a short amount of time on performing a research. Unlike the past, when one had to turn over a number of pages, now, the Internet makes it possible to access information at the click of a button. Therefore, learners and their teachers can now access information before they run out of patience.
Internet use in education provides significant flexibility that allows learners to learn something when it is convenient. This option was not available in traditional education programs where learners had to meet with instructors in class for actual learning. The situation has changed because learners now can contact their instructors online when they find time. Also, learners have the freedom to access and use various resources available through the Internet. The flexibility brought by the use of the Internet in education also comes in the form of learning from a place that is convenient to the learner. As it has been mentioned, it is not necessary for learners to meet with their instructors when learning is done over the internet. This is particularly advantageous to those learners whose movement is limited by one form of disability or another. This explains why distance-learning programs have become popular in modern education.
The adoption of the Internet in modern education has proven to be relatively affordable to the learners in the long run. Although learners and/or their parents may find it hard to meet the cost of acquiring computers and other Internet-enabled gadgets, the academic material available on the Internet is usually affordable. Many a time, instructors refer learners to various academic materials that can enable the learners to gain more knowledge on the variety of topics that they are taught in school. It becomes costly when the number of academic materials that learners are asked to buy is big. However, with the Internet, learners can access most of the academic resources at a small or no cost. In fact, there are various sites that target students, and therefore, provide information that the students are not required to pay for. Thus, learners who have any kind of Internet-enabled gadget can access such sites.
Internet use in schools is beneficial to teachers as well. Teachers, just like their students, learn continuously because there is much knowledge that appears every day. Teachers can acquire profound knowledge on various subjects on the Internet and share it with their students. They can also contact and exchange views with other educators from different parts of the world. The Internet also makes teachers’ work easier because they can keep in touch with their students beyond normal classroom hours. The teachers can also teach in different institutions without necessarily having to travel because such facilities as video conferencing can enable them to teach from locations of their convenience.
The negative impacts that arise from the use of the Internet in schools
Whereas Internet use in schools has significantly benefited teachers and learners, there have been complaints about the negative impacts that arise due to the use of the Internet in schools. Many people particularly raise their concerns over the effect that Internet use in schools has on the values of the learners. In the past, learners’ success depended heavily on their efforts because the learners had to explore as many books as possible. The Internet revolution has changed the situation because now most learners do not value hard work as much as learners did in the past. Instead of reading books, learners can get the same information through the Internet very fast. For this reason, learners rarely take time to work on their assignments because they lack the patience to do so. Therefore, the society is raising a generation that has no regard for patience and hard work.
The increased use of the Internet in schools has also led to a rise in cases of cheating among learners. Unlike the past, when learners took time to do their assignments, the Internet today provides the learners with the exact solutions that they need for their assignments. As it has already been mentioned, many learners lack the patients to work through their assignments. Such students usually opt for the answers that are provided on the Internet. Instead of studying the ideas of other scholars and using such ideas to build their own, learners copy almost everything they find on the Internet. This constitutes acts of plagiarism, which is unacceptable. It is however tricky to stop learners from cheating because the learners usually work without supervision. Therefore, since the introduction of the Internet in schools, cheating has increased to the point that it has become one of the major concerns in education.
The use of the Internet in school has created a barrier in the physical development of learners. It should be noted that with the adoption of the Internet in school, learners do most of their learning at home. Consequently, the learners spend most of their time online, where they explore a variety of information. In the process, learners do various activities on the Internet in addition to accessing academic related materials. For instance, socializing among students has moved to the Internet because they use different social media platforms for communication. This means that the learners do not devote enough time to meeting and interacting through sports. The situation has been made worse by online games..
Recent trends have shown that the Internet cannot be separated from the contemporary society. For this reason, the Internet has become an integral part of modern-day education. Education seeks to make the acquisition of knowledge as easy as possible. The Internet is important here because it makes communication and exchange of information easier. Learners and teachers enjoy many advantages of the internet use in their schools. Learners have the freedom to learn at a time and from a place that they find convenient. The Internet also makes a variety of information available to both teachers and learners regardless of their geographical location. A few negative effects have also been witnessed since Internet use was adopted in schools. For instance, learners’ values have been eroded, while laziness and cheating among learners have increased in recent years. This notwithstanding, the use of the Internet in schools cannot be avoided because its advantages outweigh the disadvantages. The Internet goes a long way to expand an individual’s social environment, which is important as people are working towards becoming global citizens.