International Journal of Applied Science and Technology

ISSN 2221-0997 (Print), 2221-1004 (Online) 10.30845/ijast

Ups and Downs of Computers Science Projects in Primary and Secondary Canadian Schools
Thierry Karsenti, Simon Collin

The overall objective of this research project was to gain a deeper understanding of the benefits and challenges of using laptops in primary and secondary school in 30 Canadian schools. In all, 2,432 students (grades 3 to 11), 272 teachers, 14 education support staff and three school principals participated in the data collection. Three main data collection instruments were used: survey questionnaires, individual semi-directed interviews, and group interviews. Of the students surveyed, 92% had a computer at home, 63.3% had a cell phone and 67.7% used a portable digital reader such as an MP3 device or iPod. On the other hand, 11% of the students did not have an Internet connection at home, whence the importance of the school, which provides their only opportunity for full Internet access. Overall, the data collected highlights 12 main benefits of using laptops. The preliminary results of this study indicate that the „one laptop per child‟ strategy fully contributes to students‟ academic success at the participating schools. The lesson retained is that, despite the technical and pedagogical challenges, this innovative initiative to provide „one laptop per child‟ has produced incontestable gains in both teaching and learning, and for the future social and professional lives of the students involved.

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