SALT LAKE CITY, UT--(Marketwire - September 08, 2009) - As students head back to school, education administrators are busy handling numerous duties to ensure the new year gets off to a good start. In addition to preparing schedules and materials, schools are tasked with a new, monumental undertaking: Managing the large number of computers, devices and smartphones that will soon run on their networks and consume large amounts of Internet bandwidth.
According to a recent study by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, more than 70 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds own a cell phone, smart phone or mobile device. Because many use their devices during the school day to log on to Web 2.0 and social networking sites like Facebook, school administrators are concerned about limited bandwidth and network overload, which could potentially interrupt other mission critical Web access. With cutbacks in staff and little budget for technology, many schools are forced to either block Web 2.0 content altogether, or ban cell phones and other portable electronic devices, despite the value they can bring to education.
A recent Project Tomorrow survey of 319,223 students, 25,544 teachers, 19,726 parents, and 3,263 school and district administrators across the country found that:
- 52 percent of respondents think mobile devices (such as cell phones, smartphones and other mobile technology) can help engage students in learning.
- 43 percent believe that mobile devices can help extend learning beyond the school day.
- More than 50 percent of the students polled said they would use technology more easily at school if they could use their own laptop, cell phone or mobile device to work on projects, access related software applications and the Internet, and communicate with classmates
"Many of our nation's K-12 schools clearly recognize the advantages of technology in the classroom, however there is a lack of solutions available for letting educators embrace emerging technologies to enhance student learning and fully prepare today's students for future success," said Brent Nixon, president of Cymphonix. "While schools are eager to embrace technology in the classroom they face a triple threat due to the rise in Web 2.0 content, increasing popularity of smartphones and a lack of technology that can truly complement traditional learning methods. Schools that want to meet the needs of a 21st century learner must be able to do more than ban phones or block Internet content."
Cymphonix® supports the incorporation of Web 2.0 into the learning environment by providing technology capable of automatically detecting and discerning education and non-education focused websites. The company's Network Composer product gives school administrators the power to shape bandwidth and reveal important information on network usage, while prioritizing Web content and improving the overall performance and security of the school's network.