Comparative Advantages of Offline Digital Technology for Remote Indigenous Classrooms in Guatemala (2019-2020)
Technology has been viewed as a means to improve the quality of education for children globally, particularly in remote and marginal communities. This study examines the comparative advantages of the use of appropriate technology (off-line servers with digital libraries connected to a classroom set of laptops) in ten intervention schools in Indigenous communities in Guatemala for one school year. The study was too short (due to pandemic restrictions) to demonstrate statistically significant differences for learning outcomes. However, using an instructional core model as a framework, qualitative findings supported four previously identified comparative advantages, and identified four additional ones relevant to remote Indigenous communities. The intervention validated the ability of technology to improve standardized instruction, differentiated instruction, opportunities for practice, and learner engagement. Newly identified advantages are: access to high-quality educational resources (substitution for print materials), teacher capacity-building, student technical skills and digital literacy, and sharing cultural knowledge.