Typical question from today's student? Likely not. From slide rules to microfiche, few people miss (or even remember) the technology of yesteryear. Although in a recent poll filmstrips and slide projectors ranked as the most nostalgic classroom tech, more than two-thirds of Americans say they don't miss any of it.
PARADE and Microsoft Office polled hundreds of Americans to discover how technology has affected students' study habits over the years. Whereas calculators and protractors may have once been viewed as "cutting edge," at 54%, laptops and tablets top the list of must have tech tools today, followed by search engines at 32%. Surprisingly, 13% are still old school, saying paper and pencils is all today's students need.
When it comes to software, word-processing ranked No. 1 as most important to today's students --- but applications like Excel and PowerPoint weren't far behind. A majority of Americans (66%) said they are all must-haves for students today.
"I think back on my poster board displays from my school days and laugh. My sons produce professional-looking presentations for school using their PC and PowerPoint that rival my own work projects. I wish I had technology like that in school," Jen Singer, Editor, MommaSaid.net.
Check out the complete results of the PARADE survey here
What one piece of technology do you wish you had when you were in high school?
Social media 1%
Search engine 49%
Would you have been a better student if you'd had it?
What one piece of technology do you think every student should have today?
Social media 0%
Search engine 32%
Paper and pencil is all they need. I survived with it. 13%
What bygone school technology do you miss the most?
Filmstrips/slide projectors 13%
Slide rules 3%
None of it! 68%
Typewriters, notebooks and calculators may be a thing of the past. What modern-day replacements are a must-have for students now?
Word-processing software like Word for papers and reports 30%
Note-taking applications like OneNote 2%
Excel for number crunching 1%
Presentation programs like PowerPoint 1%
All of the above 66%
What device most distracted you when you were in school?
Video games 1%
How much time should students spend in front of a screen during the school year? (including TV, web, video games, and smartphones)
Less than 1 hour per day 15%
Less than 2 hours per day 49%
Less than 4 hours per day 22%
Unlimited as long as its educational 13%
Compared to your childhood classrooms, what modern technology seems the most futuristic?
Smart boards 34%
Skype/video phones 44%
Overall, do students today have an easier or harder time in the classroom than you because of technology?
Easier, because of all the ways it helps in learning. 27%
Harder, because of all the ways it distracts from learning. 15%
Neither, technology just offers different tools to help learning. 57%
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