Objective Statement: Educational technology should be used by educators to enhance instruction, provide unique learning experiences, and motivate students to learn more effectively.

Technology is all around us, and in some form or another, every person uses some sort of technology every single day. People’s views on technology vary as greatly as the types of technology present in society today. From the teenager who uses every moment of spare time to play online games with his friends over the internet to the farmer of thousands of acres using outdated technology to harvest and budget the year’s crop, technology is present in everything we do. It is crucial to our lives and society will never be without the support of some sort of technology to make work, play, and everything in between, just a little bit easier.
Schools are no different. It is truly remarkable to think about schools hundreds of years ago and the impact technology has had on schools and education since then. High school course schedules can be done all with a computer software system, emails can be sent from teacher to teacher about shared lesson plans, and dissertations can even be completely researched and written digitally. This impact of technology has greatly influenced the way schools operate and has, in many ways, made life that much easier for educators and school personnel. Schools have become much better equipped with technology and teacher training over the past several decades that are continuously enhancing the learning process for students. However, “the full integration of technology into teaching and learning is a multistep process that goes well beyond buying equipment and offering basic technology training” (National Education Association, 2008, p. 2). Guidelines put forth by the NEA to alleviate some of the dissonance between educators and students to help enhance technology in schools include improving access to technology, increasing Internet access, expanding technical support, expanding professional development, capitalizing on enthusiasm for technology, and involving educators as advocates for technology in schools (p. 3).

According to recent research published by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) and the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), technology in schools positively influences the following:
  • Student achievement in reading, writing, and mathematics
  • School efficiency, productivity, and decision-making
  • Professional requirements of teachers
  • Learning skills
  • Schools meet the needs of all students
  • Equity and access in education
  • Workforce skills

These crucial components of education can be enhanced with proper integration of technology in K-12 schools today. Technology can provide avenues for students to learn in a multitude of appropriate, relevant ways that are accessible and comprehensible to all learners. Although technology integration in schools is not without challenges, it can provide a “significant increase in learning when implemented with fidelity and accompanied by appropriate pedagogical shifts” (Lemke, Coughlin, & Reifsneider, 2009, p. 42)

References
Ed Tech Action Network (ETAN). (n.d.). Why technology in schools? International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) & Consortium for School Networking (CoSN). Retrieved from http://www.edtechactionnetwork.org/why-technology-in-schools.
Lemke, C., Coughlin, E., & Reifsneider, D. (2009). Technology in schools: What the research says. Cisco Systems. Retrieved from http://www.cisco.com/web/strategy/docs/education/tech_in_schools_what_research_says.pdf
National Education Association. (2008). Technology in schools: The ongoing challenge of access, adequacy and equity. An NEA policy brief. NEA Education Policy and Practice Department. Retrieved from http://www.nea.org/assets/docs/PB19_Technology08.pdf