A report from an ongoing series of studies finds the number of 6th graders involved in social networking has more than doubled and the number taking at least one online class has tripled during the last five years. And the number of teachers with active Facebook accounts has jumped from 11 percent in 2007 to 44 percent in 2010.
Meanwhile, the report also found that one third of today’s 6th graders own a personal smartphone, and twice as many teachers and administrators have a smartphone today than in 2008. And among 6th graders, the most likely school technology complaint today is about restrictive filtering, not connectivity speed, the top complaint of 6th graders in 2005.
The findings pull from a survey of nearly 300,000 students, tens of thousands of teachers and parents, and thousands of education support staff, and are the latest released in the Speak Up report from Project Tomorrow, a national education nonprofit group based in Irvine, Calif., that advocates for the use of science, math, and technology resources in schools.
Percent of parents likely to buy a mobile device for their child to use at school (by grade of child)
SOURCE: Speak Up 2010 National Findings, Project Tomorrow, 2011
Data about student and parent technology use was released on March 31, and information about teacher and other education personnel use came out on May 11.
The survey points to mobile learning, online and blended learning, and e-textbook use as growing technology trends in schools.
A version of this article appeared in the June 15, 2011 edition of Digital Directions as Surveys Track Social Networking, Online Ed.