The Future is Here!

By Aristotle

After the pandemic walloped the world, Amy Adams, an elementary school teacher in Brooklyn, New York; realized she needed to brush up her technology skills, if she wanted to survive in the job that was more than a job, it was her passion. 

Before the pandemic, there did not pass a single day, when Amy did not look forward to meeting her gregarious class/students. As a matter of fact, after her failed relationship, it was this innocent  banter, and the alacrity of childhood, that kept her moving (on/ ahead..) But now, since the pandemic had taken the world out of its conventional way of working, Amy realized that she needed to brush up on her technology skills if she wanted to sustain her passion. (for teaching)

The Future is Here 

Who would have thought the tablets, the mobile, and the computers that were more a component and fundamental/prerequisite of adult corporate life, would be used by teachers and students mandatorily across the globe? 

Who would have thought at the end of 2019, that the world will shut down one day, and we will be left to grapple with the existential reality of a world lockdown?

The present was moving toward this kind of future. There were subtle signs in the iPhones or the androids we used for our health data, the keynote, and other features, the WhatsApp chats… or the way our gadgets have been integrated under the cloud. 

The signs were there in the unprecedented advancements made in the field of artificial and augmented intelligence. They were subtly telling us that this is how the future would look like with robotic surgery, and robotic engineering. The pandemic only pushed us faster into the future.

Like Amy, we are bringing ourselves to the avowal that we are adaptable and resilient; even the systems that we created can be adapted to the unprecedented needs of the present, and the education system ALSO survived on remote learning, since the lockdown!

Whether we like it or not – the next millennia is here – the technological revolution of the ‘70s was heading into 2040 where teaching and education would have looked something like what it does today, because of the pandemic. 

Technology Trends in Education 

Big Data, Machine Learning, and the Internet of Things (IoT) were the revolutionizing trends in education in 2019. But even before the decade could end; the pandemic brought distance learning into perspective and fundamentally changed the way education will be conducted in the future, or at least till the end of 2021. Students are now using digital platforms, with a strong focus on connectivity, versatility, and student-centered learning. But things are moving much faster than we realize. Let us take a look-

The Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) has defined educational technology as “facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources.”

On the other hand, educators who use Technology in education have a much simpler definition of the term. They say that it is a concept of transforming traditional book teaching and learning to digital form. For them, the main difference lies in the way knowledge is delivered (thanks to technology innovation) to make teaching more effective.

In short, educational technology is simply the process of integrating technology into education to build better teaching/learning experiences that result in higher learning outcomes. 

Why Educational Technology? 

I think it is a godsend for educators and teachers that they no longer have to carry a sheaf of papers- whether assessment or class submissions. Technology is driving things faster than we realized. 

Apps like Chronicle Cloud make teachers cruise through class assignments, assessments, maintain student records, share data with colleagues, management, and parents.

Technology is unequivocally an innovation of humans, and that is why it will be apt to say that technology allows teachers to innovate while teaching. Technology provides multimedia to address diverse learning styles, such as animation, audio, video, etc. Technology also enables teachers to create online courses where students can learn in their own space and at their own pace.

For teachers like Amy, I enlist a few advantages of using technology in education:

Collaborative Learning

Technology has fostered collaborative learning. While in the classroom it happened invariably that the teacher would speak at length for 30 minutes with little or no student involvement; technology has assured that the sessions don’t remain a monologue but become collaborative and interactive between teachers and students.

Ease of Learning Process

Technology in education has made the process of learning easy and fun. With the help of technology, there is more engagement amongst students and teachers. The students get to share their views, discuss a topic, bring references from the huge amounts of information available on the internet. 

The teaching and learning process becomes fun when there is collaborative learning. Collaboration sparks off better understanding and application of a concept. Technology with education makes teaching and learning more effective.

E-learning Tools 

The e-learning tools help students to share and discuss. Teachers become mentors and guide students through the discussions. With e-learning platforms, students can join online platforms and make it a collective learning experience.

Conclusion / Wrap Up

Technology is here to stay.  Once we become adept at using technology, we realize the enormous amount of benefits- from time-saving, energy-saving to the new vistas technology opens. The use of technology in education should be taken ahead by clear purpose and focus on educational objectives; reach all learners, empower teachers, encourage an ecosystem that makes learning an exciting passage / journey  //