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eLearning Update: Increase in Smartphones, Online Ed.

A report from an ongoing series of studies finds the number of 6th graders involved in social networking has more than doubled and the number taking at least one online class has tripled during the last five years.

The report also found that one-third of today's 6th graders own a personal smartphone, and are more likely to complain about restrictive filtering than connectivity speed in their schools, the top complaint of 6th graders in 2005.

The findings pull from a survey of nearly 300,000 students, tens of thousands of teachers and parents last fall, and thousands of education support staff, and are the latest released in the Speak Up report from Project Tomorrow, a national education nonprofit group based in Irvine, California, that advocates for the use of science, math, and technology resources in schools. The survey points to mobile learning, online and blended learning, and e-textbook use as growing technology trends in schools, the report says, echoing other reports and primers from last fall.

The report pertains only to data about students and teachers and was released at a Congressional briefing on Capitol Hill last Friday. Another report focusing on the data about teachers and other school personnel will be released at a second Congressional briefing on May 11.

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