More Canadian schools are finding ways to use smartphones for education

Students Texting smartphones education

Rather than telling students to put their smartphones away in the classroom, there’s new evidence supporting teachers who incorporate them.

According to a recently released research paper, educators are split on how to deal with the growing presence of technology in the classroom. However, all agree that it can be problematic if students are allowed to devote more time to their screens than to their studies, says the Canadian Press in a recent story.

The study cited states that school boards that embrace technology often see more success versus those that ban devices all together. The Toronto District School Board for example, which is also Canada’s largest school board, recently reversed a four-year ban on smartphones. The board now lets teachers dictate what works best in their classrooms.

A board in Quebec on the other hand has gone as far as distributing tablets to students in Grade 5 while upholding a permissive smartphone policy.

According to the 4,000 high school students surveyed, almost 80 percent of them own a cellphone of some sort. Of these respondents, 88.4 percent reported that cellphones were either banned in class or in school entirely.

Thierry Karsenti, Canada Research Chair on Technologies in Education and professor at the University of Montreal states that schools with more lenient policies towards cellphones get better results and went on to educate students about when it is appropriate to use their mobile devices.

Source: The Canadian Press