Downers Grove, IL--Technology is helping to improve classroom performance by students from kindergarten through college and to increase productivity by teachers, principals and administrators, according to a new study released by CompTIA, the non-profit association for the information technology (IT) industry.
A net 78 percent of the 500 educators surveyed by CompTIA believe the proliferation of technology has had a net positive impact on overall education results, processes and performances. Among the positive impacts, 65 percent of educators said students are more productive today than they were three years ago due to the use of technology.
"Technology's impact in schools has been significant, advancing how students learn, how teachers teach and how efficiently and effectively educational services can be delivered," said Carolyn April, director, industry analysis, CompTIA." With emerging technologies such as tablets and netbooks, interactive whiteboards and wireless solutions gaining ground in the classroom, the reliance on IT by the education market will only grow in the years ahead."
The new CompTIA study IT Opportunities in the Education Market is based on an online survey of 500 U.S. educators and administrators conducted in May 2011.
The number one catalyst behind technology purchases by colleges, schools and universities is the desire to improve the overall educational experience for students. This objective ranks first for both K-12 schools (63 percent) and higher education institutions (55 percent).
Among technologies specific to the education market, classroom management software has captured the attention of teachers, according to the CompTIA study. Nearly 70 percent of teachers surveyed say they're using this technology or plan to do so in the next 12 months.
Wireless networks are widely deployed across K-12 and higher education institutions, fueling environments where remote, 24/7 online access and mobility are the norm. A full 80 percent of schools have wireless service today, the CompTIA survey reveals.
Asked about some of newer technology solutions available today, more than half (56 percent) of K-12 teachers are most excited about the educational possibilities of using interactive whiteboards in the classroom, while 50 percent expect to make greater use of netbooks and tablets.
Budget cutbacks, initial investment costs and freezes on capital expenditures top the list of obstacles to wider adoption of technology in the nation's schools. In fact, 26 percent of teachers and 31 percent of administrators say they expect barriers to technology adoption to get worse in the coming year.
Yet even in an environment of tight budgets, "Education is a large market that's very receptive to new technologies," according to April. She advises technology companies looking to do business in the education market to "be creative in what you sell."
For example, at the higher education level one in four institutions has adopted cloud computing services, or plans to in the next 12 months. About four in ten schools plan to implement unified communications solutions in the coming year.