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Technologies used in classrooms should be researched before they are used. I think using untested technologies in classrooms is unethical.

Pharmaceutical products undergo extensive testing before they are approved and sold to patients. Even after they are approved, drugs and medications that are found to be dangerous to human life are withdrawn from the market. The cost of testing is borne by the pharmaceutical companies that develop the drugs and medicines.
However, in education, tools of technology are sold without any prior testing. Research is conducted after the products are purchased. Such research treats children and adults as guinea pigs.
I think that the use of technological tools in education is unethical because they are not tested before they are purchased. Many such products also do not improve learning. I think that corporations that develop and sell technological tools should bear the cost of doing research and only be allowed to sell products that actually improve learning of content.
Schools should also be able to return any products that they purchase if such products do not perform as advertised.


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  • Feb 14 2014: Seeing as drugs are specifically designed to create chemical reactions in the human body where something going wrong is lethal, and the worst educational technology could do is teach poorly, there really isn't much of a comparison to be made.

    Most of the stuff you learn is school is useless anyway.
    • Feb 14 2014: But it is so much fun - 8>))
    • Feb 14 2014: Some of the unintended uses of technology, which are not easy to control, such as cyberbullying, have caused a lot of stress for kids and at least one student has committed suicide because of unsavory things that took place online.
      What about the use of taxpayers’ dollars to buy technologies that have not been proven to be effective?
      If “Most of the stuff you learn in school is useless anyway,” why waste more money on technology?
      • Feb 15 2014: I don't know about you, but back when I was a kid (not that long ago, really), we had real world bullying worse then any of that cyber stuff. Trolling a facebook page and beating some poor kid to a bloody pulp are not really comparable.

        As for wise investment of money, sure, check if it works before you buy it, makes sense. But if you check it too thoroughly, you're wasting too much time and find yourself behind the rest of the world--this isn't medicine, you don't have to get it examined by dozens of studies over a decade to make sure it doesn't kill anyone. Such extensive testing will also make it much more expensive when you eventually do implement it.

        As for "most of the stuff you learn in school is useless anyway", that's not a fundamental problem with school, that's a fundamental problem with the curriculum. Has nothing to do with technology, just bad priorities.
        • Feb 15 2014: Based on personal experience, I think that the impact of bullying is psychological as well as physical. The physical wounds will eventually heal, but the psychological scars are likely to remain unhealed for a long time.

          The use of technologies in schools is taken for granted, and its effectiveness is rarely questioned. That is one of the many reasons why such technologies should be tested before they are used with children. The current practice is to spend lots of money on technologies and then test them on children in schools.

          Because similar technological tools are also used at home and in offices, I do not really see how the US will fall "behind the rest of the world" as you stated in your comment.
      • Feb 28 2014: The problem with cyberbullying is that while a specific case is often less harmful then a specific case of the physical kind (people sometimes forget that physical harm comes hand in hand with a psychological one), cyberbullying is more common due to the lack of face-to-face contact making it easier to commit, as there is less of a psychological barrier on the bully's part.
        However, cyberbullying isn't a result of educational technologies, its just a result of kids having access to the internet; not exactly the matter we're dealing with.

        As for it being taken for granted, perhaps that's your problem right there. Because its taken for granted, its easy to just throw money at it and expect it to work itself out, which leads to it being used incorrectly. Spending without oversight is your culprit, tech being poorly utilized in classrooms is just as symptom.
        • Feb 28 2014: Research can tell us whether technological tools improve learning. Based on research findings, we can decide if it is worth spending so much money to purchase such tools for use in classrooms.

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