WOBURN, Mass., July 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Texthelp is a global technology company that helps people understand and learn. Today they've released the results of their recent research study on math and writing instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 300 teachers across the U.S. responded to surveys specific to their area of instruction. All 198 writing teachers and 125 math teachers use Texthelp's products. The surveys were designed to uncover teacher perceptions of writing and math instruction. They also showed the effects on student learning from the past year.
The findings revealed that teachers perceived students to be significantly less engaged this past school year. They also felt that learning fell behind. Writing, especially, was perceived as having reached crisis levels. Almost 80% of the writing teachers surveyed believed that one out of every two students failed to meet expectations.
The survey also uncovered some positive outcomes. Nearly all of the teachers took advantage of digital tools to support remote, hybrid, or in-classroom learning. In many cases, they used more than one tool to make sure students had access to the curriculum and were engaged. Nearly every teacher saw the value and benefit of digital tools in their classroom. And the majority (nearly 90%), are planning to continue to use learning tools during the coming school year. These trends indicate that the modern classroom is using technology to adapt to the complex needs of students, wherever they are learning.
Shortly after the start of the pandemic, Texthelp saw a 175% increase in usage of its digital math tool and a 200% increase in usage of its writing tool. Many teachers moved from occasional use to using these digital tools every day. Those teachers who responded to the study used Texthelp's EquatIO® or WriQ® throughout the year. As a result, teachers experienced increased efficiency across the board. Even more, students now have the accessible and engaging tools they need.
Study results include:
- Navigating Hybrid and Remote Learning:
- 85% said that student engagement in writing has become lower since the start of the pandemic
- 49% shared that they had spent less time on writing instruction during remote and hybrid learning
- Increased Focus on Writing Attainment:
- 33% said that 25 percent or less of students are meeting writing expectations
- 47% believed that only 25-50% of students are meeting writing expectations
- Improved Teacher Training:
- 85% noted that there is no specialist dedicated to teaching writing
- 73% need more training or don't have adequate training to teach writing well
- Increased Usage and Benefits of Digital Math Tools:
- 64% used a math edtech tool at least once a day to create digital math during hybrid, blended, or remote learning
- 83% relied more heavily on math edtech tools as a result of hybrid, blended, or remote learning
- Low Student Engagement in Math:
- 76% found student engagement to be lower since the start of the pandemic
- Beyond the Pandemic:
- 89% said that as teaching goes back to the classroom, they will continue to use the digital/hybrid techniques that were used during the pandemic
"It is important to understand these results and to listen to teacher experiences. By doing so, we can better understand the type of support educators need. This is especially important as we look to close learning gaps," said Martin McKay, CEO of Texthelp. "We found that nearly 90 percent of teachers want to continue using digital tools. The pandemic has shown how powerful these tools can be in the classroom and at home. However, it is also clear from the results that teachers need training in order to best utilize tools."
In response to the survey findings, Texthelp will be launching a Texthelp Academy this fall. The Academy will give teachers the information they need to take full advantage of Texthelp's digital learning tools.
This past year, teachers had to modify their methods so that students could adjust. As the 2021-22 school year nears, the focus must be on helping schools utilize their current digital tools. Once the power of these tools has been realized, learning gaps can be addressed on a large scale. Texthelp's commitment to training will help teachers and students as they use Texthelp's tools this coming school year.
To read more about the results, please visit Texthelp's website for more details and recommendations for teachers.
Founded in 1996, the Texthelp Group is a global technology company. On a daily basis, it helps people all over the world to understand and to be understood. For the last three decades, it has led the way in creating innovative education and workplace technology. Texthelp believes in a world where difference, disability or language are no longer barriers. It is focused on helping all people learn and be understood through the use of digital education and accessibility tools. With over 40 million users worldwide, the Texthelp suite of products include Read&Write, EquatiO®, WriQ®, Fluency Tutor®, ReachDeck® and Speechstream®. These tools work alongside existing platforms such as Microsoft Office and G-suite. This allows for its products to be quickly integrated into any classroom or workplace with ease. Texthelp is backed by Five Arrows, the private equity arm of Rothschild Group. Visit www.texthelp.com for more information.