The Need to Connect: Students in Rural US Struggle Accessing Technology, Hurting Their Abilities to Learn
High school students in rural parts of the US face significant challenges accessing technology that may adversely affect their learning — access that students in more populated parts of the country and policymakers may take for granted, according to surveys of students who took the national ACT test. A new report, “Rural Students: Technology, Coursework and Extracurricular Activities” found that rural students were less likely than non-rural students to claim that their home internet access was “great” (36 percent vs. 46 percent). Similarly, rural students were almost twice as likely as non-rural students to state that their internet access was “unpredictable” (16 percent vs. 9 percent). At school, however, there were no substantive differences in reported internet quality between rural and non-rural students. Given that rural students lack access to rigorous coursework, this lack of technological access may impede their course-taking success and their ability to participate in online courses and other opportunities for personalized learning.
The Need to Connect: Students in Rural U.S. Struggle Accessing Technology, Hurting Their Abilities to Learn Read the Report