Key data: Less than half of teachers are ready to use tech

09 Jul 2020 |

Banner: Conference delegates attend an immersive learning experience at the 2018 Global Education & Skills Forum in Dubai, UAE

Education technology may be the future. But even in rich countries, few teachers feel prepared to use technology in their teaching


Before the COVID-19 crisis struck, most teachers felt unprepared to use information and communications technology (ICT) in their teaching and a sizeable minority also said that they lacked any training in such technology at all. A major survey of teachers and school leaders by the OECD, published in 2018, found that on average just 43% of teachers reported feeling either "well prepared" or "very well prepared" to use technology in their teaching.

The research, which spanned 31 high-income countries and economies, shows that only a slim majority of teachers have training in using information and communications technology in the classroom. Just 56% of the teachers surveyed said that their formal education or training had included the use of technology for teaching, while only 60% reported that their recent professional development activities had included the use of such technology.

The findings, published as part of the OECD's latest Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), will represent a significant hurdle for policymakers and tech proponents hoping for a greater role for education technology as schools begin to reopen worldwide. They also raise broad questions about how teachers see the role of technology in their craft. While most of the teachers surveyed by the OECD said that they did not feel well-prepared to use technology in their teaching, just 18% reported a high need for professional development in ICT skills. The survey also found that just 25% of school principals thought that digital technology for teaching was either inadequate or in short supply. Teachers, then, may not feel ready to use tech in their teaching - but that doesn't necessarily mean that they want more training or more technology in the classroom.