The use of cell phones in schools is a recent trend that has been initiated by majority of schools. The technology is used by lecturers as a tool of learning in order to communicate an important message to students. It is also used as a learning strategy in order to make learning easier. In this, lecturers can pass audio or video information to students, as a way of making lessons interesting and understandable. Current paper investigates on the use of cell phones in school. It also analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of this technology.
Explanation and Background
The use of cell phones in schools is a modern technology that is adopted by majority of learning institutions in order to advance modes of learning. It was invented in the years 2007/ 2008. The technology founded its way into a school in North Carolina, through an initiative that was named, ‘Project K-Nect’. High school students received smart phones in order to supplement algebra problems, an idea that prospered when students attained significant marks at their end of course exams. Today, this technology is used by students and their lecturers, as a tool of learning.
Why the Technology is Controversial
The use of cell phones in schools has hit most debates in schools ever since the technology begun. Most teachers and parents believe that technology has a ruining effect on their children. When the cell phone was invented, it was intended for calls and messages. Some students may use the technology for the same purpose, and, therefore, end up failing in their studies (Bugeja, 2007). Other teachers and parents believe that this technology will help their children to prosper in their studies, since they will have ample time to study (Norris & Soloway, 2009). These different opinions have been the reason behind the controversy on the use of cell phones in schools.
The use of cell phones in schools is necessary, since it enables students to work harder. When this technology was introduced in the North Carolina school, students performed fairly in the end of course exams. This indicates that the use of cell phones in schools is a very substantial element, and could adversely transform schools, when used for education purposes as affirmed by Roberson and Hagelik, (2012). This study also depicts that students and their teachers collaborated in discussion areas and chats, thereby providing solutions to difficult areas of learning, even when students were not in school. This makes learning a real possibility.
This technology is also necessary for the reason that parents want to control their children. According to a research that was conducted by the Acecomm on 1000 parents, it was noted that 95% of them wanted their children to have cell phones in school. Parents wanted to know the progress of their children, while in school. They feared that their children could be in danger; hence a cell phone would keep their parents out of worries, in case of an emergency (Beth Humble-Thaden, 2011).
The use of cell phones in school could interrupt the normal learning process. This occurs because children have lots of responsibilities to perform while in school. Some of these include playing, reading, listening among others. They may lack concentration on studies, while answering calls or sending text messages. In addition, cell phones can be lost or stolen by other students while taking school duties. This issue is likely to bring chaos in schools or temptations to students who cannot afford cell phones.
Cheating is an issue that is likely to come in after students are allowed to use cell phones in school. They may exchange texts during an exam, thereby end up failing or not getting necessary marks. This would be difficult to access a student hence the aim of being in school may not be achieved. This is in reference with a survey that was conducted on American students. The survey indicated that 98% of students cheat on exams through the exchange of text messages. This violates school policies due to copying the homework and other misconducts.
Evaluation of the Pros
The pros indicate that students need to use cell phones in school. Since the technology helps them to acquire a lot of knowledge from the Internet, and to keep them busy at all times. In addition, they are able to study for long hours, a condition that also enables them to achieve their best, regarding their studies. For example, it is noted that students of the California got much aid from cell phones. They were able to solve their algebra problems with the use of cell phones as noted earlier.
Evaluation of the Cons
The cons indicate that the use of cell phones can be very harmful to students. Students are likely to forget the purpose of cell phones in school, and, therefore, end up using them for irrelevant purposes. For example, it is noted that students have been using cell phones to cheat during exams. Consequently, it indicates that they may fail or lack concentration while in school, trying to make calls or send text messages (Kolb, 2009).
From the mentioned studies, it is noted that the use of cell phones in school has its advantages and disadvantages. However, the disadvantages have more weight than the advantages. The use of cell phones in schools is noted to distract students’ attention; hence failing in numerous activities that are conducted in school. Therefore, the use of cell phones in schools should not be allowed in order to give students an ability to fully concentrate on studying. Secondly, children who cannot afford cell phones may not concentrate while in school. Schools that encourage the use of cell phones may encompass a hard time during normal functions of school. Some students may decide to spend most of their time on the Internet and, therefore, lack the target of attending the school. Others may perform poorly due to lack of concentration in class. The use of cell phones in school encourages laziness, since a good number of students may find it hard to write notes or conduct assignments. In my opinion, cell phones should not be used in schools.
The use of cell phones in schools is a new trend. It has been adopted by numerous schools in the US. The issue has advantages and disadvantages that make it controversial. Parents and teachers have had diverse opinions concerning the issue. Students want the technology to be pushed forward. However, the use of this particular technology adds numerous irregularities to schools. Students are likely to concentrate on calls and messages rather than using the material for their own benefit. Cheating in exams is a way that has been brought forward by the use of this technology. Even though the technology helps some students to acquire a lot of knowledge from the Internet and through discussion with their lecturers, a good number of them use it for the unintended purposes. Therefore, the use of cell phones in schools should be banned in order to give students ample time to study.