These days it is almost impossible for teachers to keep up with the different technologies that students are using in the classroom both with and without the knowledge of the said teacher. Some teachers have embraced this technology and allow it fully within the classroom, while others have continued to outlaw it for practical reasons. For instance, math teachers are well aware that there are countless sites and apps that students can use to obtain answers to math questions without really doing any work or thinking. If this was allowed in the classroom, then results on standardized tests like the EOC and the ACT would be disastrous for both students and the schools at which they attend. But what if there was a happy medium that existed which allowed students to use some of this technology…at least to a certain degree.
Mathway and Wolfram Mathematics are among the most popular apps that students can download onto their phones; however, there are many, many other sites and programs that perform similar functions. When assigning homework, these tools can be very helpful in many ways in regards to student academic performance.
I believe students should be encouraged to use these programs when they are working at home. Most of the time students will do their work at home and will not know if they are doing the entire assignment incorrectly until at least the next day in class (perhaps longer depending on when and how the teacher grades their homework). With Mathway, students could know immediately whether their answer is correct or incorrect. Also, if a student just has no idea how to solve a problem sometimes just seeing the solution can be extremely helpful. While the solutions are free on most sites, you often have to pay extra to see each individual step which would be even more helpful. Obviously some students would take advantage of the site and just copy down all the correct answers while doing very little thinking. Chances are these students are going to cheat one way or another on homework assignments and it will be quickly revealed come quiz or test time in which they are definitely not allowed to use these programs.