.!!This question sounds like “are automobiles making people fatter?” The answer is both yes and no, depending on the way and frequency of using. Technologies are incredibly helpful; they enhance the learning process as much as automobiles enhance traveling. But you may use your automobile not for the trip to another city, but for walking to the nearest bakery or jogging instead.
Technology provides effortless access to information. The troubles start when students stop analyzing the information they get, blindly believing what the Internet says. The feeling that each and every answer already exists online, the possibility to play games anytime – which is a much more emotionally rewarding way of spending time than studying, trying to cheat with the help of the technologies make students lazy. The technologies themselves don’t.
Technologies can distract
Almost every gadget we use in our daily life has multiple purposes. A dozen years ago, we used a wristwatch to know the time, a cellphone to make calls and write SMS (or occasionally play snake-eating-bricks game), and a notebook to schedule events. Now we have everything and much more in one smartphone, laptop, or tablet. It looks like the only thing we need for all the work.
But it is also the thing we often use for entertainment. We know that we have games, movies, books, and other fun stuff just a few clicks away. Moreover, no one will know that we are not working (reading something other than your textbook during a lesson will be suspicious, but you may either write down the lecture with your laptop or play the latest game, and no one will notice it).
Not many of us have such iron willpower to resist the constant temptation to relax and have positive emotions without doing anything like searching for the disc or cassette or finding the right book in the library. The accessibility of fun and relaxing stuff erodes our determination to study hard.
Technologies provide easy answers
Did you ever just google literally the same question your teacher asked you, hoping that someone else in the world has already found the answer? All of us do this sometimes. But do we have to believe the answers we get from the Internet? Not always. But few of the new generation know how to properly check the facts and investigate the credibility of sources.
Lots of students consider Wikipedia as reliable as any other printed encyclopedia. But the Wiki articles are written by the average people and anyone can change them as they please. It is a self-regulating community, and the material provided there isn’t completely accurate and – moreover – isn’t expected to be. But people take it as granted, replicate it and consider the place of the site on the search results page or the number of reposts a measure of credibility. Moreover, students like to read examples of essays on websites like OzziEssays to make the topic they have to write about clear for them.
This isn’t mostly laziness, but being inexperienced. Our brain can’t process as much information as we get in the modern world, so it goes into “safe mode”, being guided by primal instincts. If everyone else runs, run. If there are a hundred reposts of something, believe in it. Breaking through these instinctive reactions need extra effort and lots of thinking, but people seldom do this until they face the consequences of their mistakes. Like an F grade.
Technologies do our work instead of us
The level of AI and neural networks allows writing simple code and texts that need just minor editing from human beings to be used. Sometimes people use it to make their work easier, but there are lots of cases when they just skip their own work and pass it to the machines. If the task just needs to be done, no matter who does it – it’s fine. But if the main purpose of the task is learning through practice – those who skip it shoot themselves in the leg.
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The misunderstanding of the real purpose of doing homework. Or, lack of desire to get that exact profession usually causes such behavior. But sometimes people are just really lazy; they don’t understand the process of learning at all, thinking that they can continue skipping tasks and “outsourcing” them to machines for all their lives. What’s most unnerving – it becomes a plausible possibility with such rapid growth of technologies.
Technology is a wonderful set of tools invented by humanity to make their lives much better and easier. Technology allows us to make new discoveries, open new horizons, and learn more about ourselves and the world around us. But it’s still just a tool! And if people want to use it to watch youtube pranks, post memes or playtime killers. They still can use this tool in an unproductive way.
Technology can’t make students lazier. But it can give lazy students a countless number of ways to express their laziness without being noticed.