Elon University

A vision for the future

This is one of nearly a thousand foresight statements shared by people from around the world. To return to the Voices of the People home page or to refine your search, click here.

Name: Laura Beth Fitzgerald

From: North Carolina

Bio: Educator enrolled in a graduate technology in education course.

Area of Expertise: Advocate/Voice of the People

Topic: Technology

Headline: Technology in Education: Creating a 21st Century Classroom

Nutshell: The Internet plays a significant role in education for the 21st century, but it cannot replace real experiences, which is the framework for knowledge.


As a veteran educator, I recognize the impact of technology in education, but through the Internet, we are creating a “virtual reality” (an oxymoron) that cannot replace real, concrete experiences that build students’ background knowledge.

Educators must recognize and utilize technological advances as tools for learning, but not as substitutes for learning, which occurs through real-world experiences. Yes, students can watch the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly through United Streaming, but a video cannot replace the experience of observing the process close-up and personal.

Students can communicate via e-mail and texting, but face-to-face social interaction and collaborative learning simply cannot be replaced. I am committed to using the Internet as a valuable resource for learning, not as a substitute for real, experiential-based learning.

Date Submitted: June 17, 2010