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Analysis Of American Schools

The entire article is concerning the wrong path on which American schools appear to be currently. The authors say that although they are not very fond of invasion of computers in schools, technology has to be used in the educational process. They argue not the mere existence of computers but the way they are frequently used.

The main point of the article is the importance of computers as the tools in providing excellent education, not driving studentsí attention away from the core significance of learning. The authors also believe that internet is a sufficient instrument for students and teachers in helping structure educational process and provide a unique feeling of being connected to the rest of the world. The primary subject matter of the paper lies in the belief that computers should direct students and teachers in the right path of education, making it easier, entertaining and at the same time more in-depth for both parties.

The writers of the article claim that computers often have been causing lots of problems for students because of too many unnecessary disruptive things such as glamour and graphics instead of deep serious education. In spite of this disadvantage computers according to authors are the source of major power in educating course. The main issue brought by the authors is that technology should remain in the background and be of secondary importance, while the child and teacher are using it in practical matters. In other words technology should be like a clear window through which person gets a wider view at the outside world. Another point stressed in the article concerns internet connection, which would serve the teacher and students as planning tool, important for scheduling sources and other activities. In doing so both will have a clear idea of where they are and what path they should choose in order to best suit their current position. The importance of software is stressed in the article as the interactive tool for a more vivid and life educational process. The authors claim that each online school should have a so called "comprehensive log" through which everything a child has ever learned and each paper submitted can be looked up.

The issue of disruptive nature of computers in schools discussed by the authors is of big importance, however many factors are overlooked in this instance. The authors just mention that computer and internet often drive away attention of students however the article does not consider such issues as careful teacherís guidance in the classroom. Although students sometimes may not pay attention to what is being taught, it should be stressed that teachers are responsible for order, and educational program should be structured in such a way for children not to be consumed by glamorous ads or unnecessary pictures. Only sites (if computer is logged on to the Web) that are relevant to the subject discussed should be available to viewing. Thus it is clear that authorís view at this problem is one sided to some extent and should be viewed from a wider perspective as there are many issues yet to be talked about. The authors are mainly hinting at the negative side of computer use and technology as major distracters in ordinary schools, while trying to contrast that issue with the cure brought by online schools where computers will be used only as helpers in proper situations.

The next big question posed by the authors is the secondary role of technology while the main educational function would be accomplished by teachers and resources such as books. The argument is generally well supported, by statements that computers after all are not to replace the education itself but to facilitate thorough knowledge of students. Authors carefully state that although real books are the best option, they are not against electronic versions which are more practical at times. So, the role of computer according to authors is well defined by providing all necessary materials for learning, and giving them a well structured form. The authors also carefully noted that computers give children great possibilities in entertaining them while learning such subject as geography or history, by providing a 3D picture of the area studied or historical period. In general article approached the issue of computer usage as a medium between the world of knowledge and a student in a coherent manner, stating many advantages and providing vivid examples of actual process.

The importance of well scheduled and balanced educational process is well understood by parents and teachers. The authors state that with computers such perfect situation could be achieved and regulated when needed to meet the needs of both parties. So both know what to do after a certain stage is over, and how it should be evaluated. The articles shows that each step in the process will be recorded and put into system, for easy access in the future, thus it proves the structured form of the online schooling described in the article.
The overall optimistic mood of the article gives a very colorful and hopeful picture of the online education. The authors however have not considered various factors that play negative role in such educational approach, for instance the affordability of such education. Many people in America still do not have computers, and buying one with all necessary educational software could sum up to as much as $3000. Although authors speak about high schools being computerized it is understandable that homework and other group assignments have to be done on the computer using the Net in most cases. Also authors claim that ideally by 2001 America will have perfect schools with wide access to computers and needed software, the real picture shows a drastically different result. Sill a lot of schools lack computers which would satisfy the number of students and appropriate filtering systems, which are unable to give access to information needed.

Submitted by:

Jeff Stats

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