The Impact of Technology on Academic Progress: A Mixed-Methods Study
Technology has revolutionized the educational sector in recent years. The rise of e-learning and blended learning models has facilitated new methods of teaching and assessment. However, there is a lack of empirical evidence on the effectiveness of these changes on academic performance. This paper reports on a study that aimed to assess the effect of technological changes on academic progress at a university in the UK. A mixed-methods approach was used, involving both quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis. The findings suggest that technological changes have had a positive effect on academic performance, but that there are some areas where further improvement is needed.
2. Literature Review
There is a growing body of literature on the use of technology in education (e.g., McGee et al., 2018; Zhao, 2013). Technology can be used in a range of ways to support teaching and learning, including for online delivery of content, provision of feedback to students, and assessment of student work (McGee et al., 2018). E-learning and blended learning models are becoming increasingly common, as they offer advantages over traditional face-to-face teaching, such as increased flexibility and access to resources (Zhao, 2013). However, there is still a lack of empirical evidence on the effectiveness of these changes on academic performance. A number of studies have looked at student satisfaction with e-learning or blended learning (e.g., Dabbagh et al., 2005; Liu et al., 2006), but few have assessed the impact on academic outcomes such as grades or retention rates.
3. Data Collection and Analysis
A mixed-methods approach was used for this study, involving both quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis. Quantitative data were collected from student records and surveys, and qualitative data were collected through interviews with students and staff. The quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and inferential testing, while the qualitative data were analyzed using thematic analysis.
The findings suggest that technological changes have had a positive effect on academic performance, but that there are some areas where further improvement is needed. In particular, the use of e-learning resources was found to be associated with higher grades, but there was a lack of engagement with these resources among some students. The interviews revealed that some students found it difficult to access or navigate the e-learning platform, and that they preferred face-to-face teaching for certain subjects. There was also a need for more support from staff in terms of using technology for assessment and feedback. Overall, the findings suggest that while technological changes can improve academic performance, there are still some challenges that need to be addressed.
5. Conclusion and Recommendations
The findings of this study suggest that technological changes can improve academic performance, but that there are still some challenges that need to be addressed. In particular, it is important to ensure that students have adequate access to e-learning resources and support from staff. Future research should focus on how to overcome these challenges in order to maximise the potential benefits of technology in education