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Ten Things Everyone Should Know about K-12 Students’ Digital Learning, 2017

Students Speak Up on Technology & Learning


Infographic Text:

  1. The next step: self-directed mobile learning
    • 2x as many students w/Chromebooks now vs. 2014
    • Students are using mobile devices to self-direct learning: doing research on the Internet (84%), looking up class info (54%), creating shareable docs (49%), emailing teachers questions (41%), setting due date reminders (39%) and taking notes (39 %)
  2. Changing rules re: tech at school
    • In 2011, 50% of students said they couldn’t access social media at school. Today, only 38% have the same complaint.
    • In 2011, 32% of students said school Internet was too slow; 53% say that is a big problem now!
    • No change here: 42% of students say too many rules at school limit tech use.
  3. A new generational divide – among students
    • 37% of students in grades 6-8 say they are playing online or digital games for learning purposes at least weekly; only ¼ of high school students say the same.
    • Top benefit of learning games: “They challenge me to think more than other class activities!
  4. Learning online sounds great!
    • Middle school students are very interested in online learning. Top wish list for online classes: study skills (58%), art appreciation (58%), world languages (56%), career tech ed (51%) and computer science (47%).
  5. Getting the news – the student way
    • Most often: Use a mobile app to get news alerts. Least often: Read a print news story. 
    • Action needed: only 41% of students say they know how to detect bias in what they read online or evaluate information accuracy.
  6. All-purpose study guide: The Internet
    • 79% of high school students use the Internet at least once a week to support homework and school assignments (48% use it daily) …. even though only 14% of teachers say they are assigning Internet-dependent homework weekly.
    • Where are students going online? At home (79%), campus before/after hours (50%), fast food or coffee shop (28%) and public library (20%).
  7. Student-teacher conference
    • 2/3rds of students say teachers should just talk to them in class; only 28% said a text is best. Hurrah for real-time communications!
  8. Coding for the future
    • Majority of students are interested in coding, but boys lead the pack on interest. 66% of boys and 58% of girls in grades 3-8 want to learn to code. By high school only 50% of girls say the same!
    • 13% of elementary students say they are already coding!
  9. Goodbye, summer camp! Hello, online video!
    • More than 1/3 of students say they want to learn about future jobs and careers via online courses, digital games, online videos and social media.
    • Decreasing in interest: Summer camps, after school programs and student competitions.
  10. Tech x learning = my future
      Students say…
    • learning how to use technology is important for my future (51%).
    • learning using technology results in college and career ready skills like creativity (46%), collaboration (48%) and problem solving (41%)
    • they use technology more often for learning outside of school than in school (56%).

Source: Speak Up Research Initiative, 2016 Findings - the results of the authentic, unfiltered views of 435,510 K-12 students from around the world. Speak Up is an annual research initiative of Project Tomorrow, a global nonprofit organization. Learn more about Speak Up and other research findings from Project Tomorrow at tomorrow.org.