"It's no secret that the combination of young people and computers can equal aimless Web surfing. In the classroom, teachers incorporating computers into their lessons need to make sure students are using technology in productive ways. To do this, many schools have turned to classroom management systems."
Schools have turned to classroom management systems to monitor what students are using classroom computers for, much like a convenience store surveillance system. Teachers can use these systems to block certain applications from student's computers such as playing games or surfing the Internet when the student should be writing a paper in Microsoft Word. This is done by the teacher taking control of the student's computer and sending the correct screen to the student's computer. As well as a teacher taking control of the student's computer, they can also lock down the computers when the student should not be using them, such as during lectures.
As well as this computer communication with the student, the teacher can also send private instant messages to students, much like they were seated next to them.
These classroom management systems can also be used to administer tests, and distribute or collect files, much like the Blackboard system Pittsburg State uses. I have had classes when we have had to turn in homework using Blackboard's digital drop box and take timed tests on Blackboard. To take a test on Blackboard, the instructor simply begins the test and gives the student the test password that they enter to begin the test taking. There are several advantages to using these systems such as eliminating the use of paper, and making grading easier by already having answers programmed in the computer with the test key.
Finally, not only does the use of these systems make a teacher's job less stressful,