Why is there a NEED for Speed in technology assisted learning? Isn’t a lack of speed something that can just be compensated for with a little patience?
Our answer is no way, no how, not ever. Just ask any frustrated teacher, presenter, or child that is waiting for a presentation, video, or game that has a poor connection. You can’t even access, much less use certain types of interactive or synchronous sites and applications at all without adequate speed.
While system performance as a whole is what matters, and most issues can be addressed locally, an area of specific concern is high speed internet access. Even in developed countries there are many rural locations without any good options for a high speed internet connection. To ensure quality learning for everyone, we must start to view quality internet access as just another utility like electricity, roads, and clean water. As we transition, we must do our best to design content for differentiated connections as well as differentiated learning styles.
The promise of technology in areas of motivation, engagement, enrichment, self direction, equality, and positive experiences are tied to how distributed, transparent, and functional the technology is. Speed, or at the very least, the perception of speed, is a big part of access and minimizing frustration so that focus can be maintained on the subject, rather than the delivery of the material. Otherwise frustration can make the very problems we are trying to solve with technology even worse. Take a tip from online sales companies, they know anything that takes longer than a fraction of a second, costs them sales. In education, even seconds of delay cost you engaged students.
How does computer performance impact your learning or classroom experience?