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Educate in the use of new technologies: why it is necessary

Educate in the use of new technologies: why it is necessary

June 14, 2024

Every few centuries, humanity takes a giant step in its cultural development based on the discovery and proliferation of a new revolutionary resource. It happened with fire, it happened in the industrial revolution, and now it's happening with what, for now, we call technological revolution .

And it is a fact that new technologies are assuming a paradigm shift in our society. Being able to maintain contact channels indefinitely open through social networks or being a click of the latest news anywhere in the world, involves changes at cultural and commercial level that, like it or not, are there. And like all great change, this implies a gradual process of adaptation and learning , especially in the case of younger generations, very exposed to these resources.

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Why educate in the use of new technologies?

We must maximize the advantages that these resources offer to our society, while at the same time we prevent the risks associated with them as much as possible. In this sense, there is a growing awareness of the importance of train the new generations who have known the world with all this technology that is growing in the middle of a technological revolution.

The goal is for them to know how to make good use of these new resources. They may technically move like fish in water in their use as users, but that does not mean they are able to integrate them into their lives in a healthy way .

And it is that you do not need a bad conception of social networks to fall into any of its dangers, sometimes enough with a spontaneous and natural use guided by the principle of immediate gratification offered by the Internet connection and access to all kinds of contents and virtual interactions. That is why it is vital to guide and train people in proper use.

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The danger of addiction to technology

One of the most prominent dangers is that these new technologies are potentially addictive. Video games, applications, social networks or simple navigation involve intrinsic mechanisms that can lead us to suffer addiction by obtaining a reward (or, rather, reinforcer) immediately.

Let's take an example. When I carry out the behavior of writing a message by chat, the response message obtained works as a reinforcement or reward. Reinforcements are defined as those consequences of a behavior that increase the likelihood of repetition in the future . Under this framework, it is easy to understand that the more I write and the more they answer me ... the more likely they are to rewrite. If you have become familiar with any instant messaging application, you will be beginning to understand the magnitude of this risk.

Videogames base their operation on this mechanism . I carry out the behavior of playing and, eventually, the video game itself administers me a reinforcement, such as an achievement, a skill, unlock a new level ... every time we activate one of these reinforcements, our behavior of playing is perpetuated more and more and, if we pay attention, we will see how the game at the beginning offers us the prizes by doing the simplest tasks but, as we advance in the game, we will obtain them every time and after performing feats that imply greater effort or skill.

This is because in order to provoke a behavior the reinforcements must be constant, while to maintain it, these reinforcements must be administered intermittently. So, going back to the chat, when we already wrote forty times to the same person, and suddenly he answers us ... not only will he have reinforced the one we wrote, but he will have reinforced that we do it forty times.

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Smartphones and the Internet: the realm of immediacy

As in any addiction, it is not enough to know the possible long-term negative consequences , since the psychology of behavior tells us that, in general, an immediate reinforcer has more effect on our behavior than a deferred punishment. In other words, we usually prefer bread for today despite hunger for tomorrow.

Thus, we must offer concrete guidelines and alternative behaviors , also duly reinforced, if we want to avoid this malaise that already affects around 20% of young people.

However, while we put on this prevention work, it is easy for many of us to be in the grip of new technologies, and therefore if we suffer symptoms such as irritability or anxiety when the Smartphone is not available or another device, if our academic or work life is being affected or if we detect a lack of self-control regarding the use of new technologies, perhaps it is time to reveal ourselves to our reinforcers and seek the guidance of a specialist.

Because of technology, reinforcers are everywhere, and it is better that we choose them ... and not the other way around.

Top 10 Reasons to Use Technology in Education: iPad, Tablet, Computer, Listening Centers (June 2024).

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