Technologies Revolutionizing Education
If we compare the classrooms in modernized schools to those in which our parents were studying back in the 70s, we can find many objects and tools that have replaced the traditional means of education and that, over time, have become essential parts of the educational process. We’re talking about projectors, digital boards, clickers for attendance, and participation control devices, etc.
That is the consequence of the technology that has been gradually making its way into the education sector to such an extent that now, we can speak of a branch of technology that is focused on education in particular. Technological innovations allow modern students to enjoy many alternative experiences that could not even be conceived in the past.
Therefore, in this article, we will discuss the technological trends in education and talk about virtual reality, the use of video games, artificial intelligence, and many other innovations.
It represents one of the most successful technological innovations in recent years. The augmented reality or virtual reality (AR or VR) assumes the visual perception of scenes and objects (generated by computer technology) that gives a user the sensation of being immersed in them.
With this technology being implemented into the education sector, it is possible to make the learning process more attractive and interactive. It allows us to experience the scenarios we find in history books, explore the countries and their capitals by traveling to places without leaving the classroom, understand the functioning of the blood circulation in the human body, etc.
The culture of education through the Internet experienced remarkable growth in the middle of the 21st-century first decade. Nowadays, there is already talk of online studying supremacy in the context of certain learning types, particularly in the case with those subjects requiring an active teacher-student interaction. It is a trend when users ’don’t limit themselves to reading or looking through certain content but rather increase their level of involvement by producing their content and publishing it by using simple online tools.
Various free service also make the mission of learners much more accessible. Advanced calculators, APA website citation generator, libraries, video guides, and so on. All that facilitates the culture of online education and sets new standards.
Apart from sending messages, browsing the web, checking social networks, taking selfies, or receiving calls at wrong moments, smartphones can also contribute to education by facilitating the learning to schoolchildren.
To date, most of the policy guidelines related to mobile phones in schools have been focused on the prohibition of their use in the classroom. However, even UNESCO believes ’it’s more useful to regulate the use of these devices for pedagogical purposes.
Among the measures on the use of smartphones in the classroom proposed by UNESCO, we can find the following:
● Implementation of policies that encourage the use of ICT (Technologies of Information and Communication) in education
● Training for teachers to be advanced technology users
● Creating more smartphone-compatible educational content
Learning Through Video Games
During the last years, video games purposes have evolved significantly, ceasing to be seen as a mere pastime. Now, it is a useful educational tool! It has already been proved that video games help to improve memory, logic, concentration, focus, and planning, and serve to develop such skills as coordination, motility, and spatial orientation.
There are studies that show how playing Tetris for 30 minutes a day for three months can help to increase the size of the cerebral cortex. Other investigations show that playing 3D games increases the rate of memory capacity 12% better than 2D ones. Today, games such as Minecraft are being used in classrooms to develop the youth’s creativity. All the skills acquired through video games can be useful in different professions such as engineering, architecture, art, or design.
Although in recent days artificial intelligence has grown by leaps and bounds, the idea of implementing technology in classroom activities at an educational level will still take a few more years. In September 2016, Stanford University (California, USA) conducted a study according to which this type of technology will be common in the classrooms in just fifteen years.
The benefits of this implementation are:
● Personalization of learning
● Expansion of the classrooms
● Better interaction between teachers and students (both inside and outside the classroom)
However, it also poses significant challenges that will affect work, income, and other issues that ensure the possibility of artificial intelligence adaptation in education.
Although this technological tool still cannot be seen frequently in the classroom, the truth is that three-dimensional printers provide enormous educational benefits. 3D printers are one of the biggest bets in education for the near future because it can significantly help with specific subjects thanks to the possibility of materializing a studied concept in a real object. Imagine being able to create the graphic design the professor has taught you at a ’moment’s notice!
At the international level, such countries as the United States have already begun to implement this technology in education, both in schools and universities, ahead of the NMC Horizon 2015 report stating that 3D printers will be adopted in higher education between four and five years from now.
The main advantages of this technology are the following:
● Fosters creativity and the ability to solve problems
● Leads to greater participation in education
● Attracts the students' interest
● Facilitates the task for the teachers
Moreover, it can even promote collaboration between different courses and departments.
The e-Learning consists of a learning process conducted via the Internet. It is characterized by the physical separation between the teacher and the student, but communication here is predominating and carrying out continuous didactic interaction. Here, a student becomes the center of training and has to self-manage their learning with the help of tutors and peers.
This distance training method — or blended learning — has contributed to the successful training for many people. Among the most important advantages of e-Learning, there are:
● Space-time barriers disappeared
● Flexible training schedule
● A student is the center of the learning processes
● Access to the various content
● Constant communication
After having analyzed these seven tools that are changing the education sector, do you think it means a favorable academic evolution? Or, on the contrary, do you think that, with these advanced technologies, the essence of education is evaporating?