Technology and Child Development: Evidence from the One Laptop Per Child Program

As of 2012, 36 countries implemented a One Laptop per Child (OLPC) program to improve students’ learning. Using a large-scale randomized evaluation of the OLPC program in 319 primary schools in rural Peru, this study evaluates the effectiveness of the program. Despite the increased ratio of computers per student and substantial increases in use both at school and at home, there was no effect on enrollment or test scores in math and language skills. However, there were some positive effects found in general cognitive and computer skills. The authors conclude the program must be combined with a pedagogical model targeted at increasing school achievement rather than a sole technological focus.



Cristia, J., Ibarrarn, P., Cueto, S., Santiago, A., & Severin, E. (2012). Technology and child development: Evidence from the One Laptop per Child Program. Inter-American Development Bank.