Pros and Cons of Using Multimedia in the Classroom Multimedia is becoming an accepted educational practice for instruction. Whereas traditional instructional media included tools such as books, newspapers and television, multimedia is a single medium that includes many formats, including video, graphics, print, and audio. Multimedia is provided in a digital format that allows students to actively interact with the material. Though multimedia is more versatile than most traditional media, there are both pros and cons to using it for instruction in the classroom. Read paragraph Space Exploration Pros and Cons.
Advantages of Multimedia in School The advantages of multimedia when compared to traditional media are a primary reason it is becoming so widely used in schools. Multimedia is interactive and easier to individualize for specific student needs. It can be used in a variety of settings, including on a computer at home or school, a web-enabled or smart phone, or portable device such as a laptop, notebook, or pad. Students actively participate in learning while using multimedia.
The combination of video, text, sound and graphics peep students' interest while allowing for real-world scenarios that can be more meaningful. The inclusion of the Internet in schools makes multimedia easier to obtain and keep updated since it can be streamed from an educational web site maintained by a publisher or content expert. The use of web-based multimedia also meaner students can access the lesson from anywhere they have Internet access. Disadvantages of Multimedia in Classroom Perhaps the biggest disadvantage to using multimedia in the classroom is the necessary technology.
Ideally, each student should have access to a computer or device to run the interactive lesson. The computing devices need to be able to handle the processing demands of the multimedia, and the school's network, if using web- based multimedia, needs to be able to handle the bandwidth demands. Unfortunately, many schools struggle to keep computers up to date and in good repair and do not have Internet capabilities that can keep up heavy multimedia demands or computer labs with enough machines to provide one for each student in class.
Another problem is the digital divide, or gaps in technology access, since not all students have easy access to the web or to computers that can run multimedia. Another major disadvantage is lack of professional development for teachers. Effectively using multimedia to enhance or provide lessons requires understanding how multimedia, and technology in general, supports learning. Teachers also need time to analyze how individual multimedia presentations work so they can better edify the instruction for specific learning needs.
Multimedia provides an interactive way for students to participate in a lesson. The lesson can be accessed both in and out of school and can be modified for individual learning needs. However, this depends on having technology available to support the multimedia project's processing and bandwidth needs at school, students' able to access it after school when necessary, and teachers' understanding how to use it to enhance learning and truculent.