Computer Based Interactive Learning and Its Benefits to the Education Process

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Chapter 1

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

The use of computers in education opens a new area of knowledge and offers a tool that has the potential to change some of the existing educational methods. The teacher is the key to the effective use of this resource in the educational system. As computer use continues to increase in society, educators must also prepare for the use of computers within the classroom McCannon and Crews (2006). In the past, Computer lessons were normally taught through conventional classroom instruction, in which a teacher would be teaching in front of the class, while students were passive recipients of knowledge.

Back in early years where advance technology have not grown yet, it is always been the traditional way of teaching using chalk and board. Especially in elementary level, teachers will write the things being discussed and pupils will have to copy those written on the board Meigchilyt (2007).

Nowadays, it is obvious that visual materials have been used in every field and technological devices, especially televisions and computers, have been affected students. As a result of instructional materials that are supported by variety of sound, image and animations are observed as more lasting, enjoyable and effective ones Demirel (2006). These are experimental evidences that only oral explanation method doesn’t work well. If principles of how students learn are taken into account, richness of the visual content makes instruction more lasting and effective Mayer (2008).

However, at present, technology has a great influence on the educational practices in the classrooms in which computer based technology is very much in use now to enhance instruction and transfer the focus from the teachers to the students in the learning process Gopalakrishnan (2007). The role of the elementary school teacher is evolving from that of a giver of information to that of a facilitator of student learning. New technologies already exist to help teachers complete that evolution Downs, Clark and Bennett, (2008). Studies support distinctive differences in ways students retain information gathered and applied using multimedia versus traditional modes of instruction.  In a study conducted with sixth graders, R. Lehrer, found that students who learned about the civil war using multimedia had made long lasting connections with the materials while students who learned traditionally had little to no retention of the material on year later.  It was also noted that the level of student engagement was significantly higher amongst students with both high and low abilities.

As an increasing number of institutions adopt interactive learning strategies, their successes depend not only on the availability of technology but also on the extent to which faculty and students are supported as they explore and develop innovative ways to integrate technology into the learning experience.

Sharjah American International School strongly believes in interactive learning and its benefits to the education process and student understanding. They integrated Computer Based Learning in the Elementary School section of their school. Computer Based Learning to the use of computers as a key component of the educational environment. While this can refer to the use of computers in a classroom, the term more broadly refers to a structured environment in which computers are used for teaching purposes. Means (2008) suggests that technology in the classroom could provide real learning opportunities to at-risk students.

The leading Philippine educational materials publisher Vibal Publishing House Inc. and international computer software company Microsoft have not only imagined it, they are working on making that a reality. Vibal and Microsoft, in cooperation with the Department of Education (DepEd), have partnered to create a new kind of classroom set to enter the digital era. Foundation University in Dumaguet learning...
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