Technology has completely transformed the way we go about our daily lives, and education is no exception. True enough, 95% of teachers today have started incorporating tech into the classroom—from elementary and middle school, to college and grad school.
Below, we look at some tech trends taking over the world of education, and making learning more interesting.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is nothing new, and especially not for learning. Duolingo, for instance, is an AI-powered app that teaches its users a semester’s worth of language lessons. In actual schools, the uses of AI are much less developed but no less impressive. While any machine can check multiple choice answers, only AI systems are advanced enough to mark essays, which is what programs like PEG and KAT do. They’re still in their infancy stage, but as they read more papers, the better they become at checking.
In terms of immersion, no technology does the job better than virtual reality (VR). While they were mostly popular with video games like Resident Evil, schools have taken VR to conduct some in-house “field trips”. With the power of this technology, they are able to teach students about Roman history or the ecology of a jungle by letting them “see” the locations via VR headsets. Some games are even being used in physical education, to make the idea of moving more fun and filling.
Previously, 3D printing was reserved for complex industries. In the manufacturing world, for instance, making a PCB with a 3D printer requires a high level of expertise and skill. Aside from properly designing each component, you also have to know how to configure the 3D printer itself. Fortunately, this technology has become much more accessible across other sectors—including education. In fact, some schools have started teaching students how to use 3D printers to create different models. Aside from that, it’s a good way to hone their conceptual and innovative thinking.
Computer games have always made activities more engaging, so it’s no surprise to see them used in schools. There are games such as Minecraft: Education and Cities: Skylines, which are purposefully made for student learning. Teachers are free to use them to teach their students neat topics, like programming and economics. There’s even an annual event for ed games, called the Games Education Summit, which is sponsored by big industry names like Unreal Engine and Epic Games.
Online Learning in K-12
Online learning used to be something reserved for higher education, but not anymore. Over 2.7 million students across the country are taking part in digital learning, and many of them are K-12 enrollees at online public schools. This shift is brought about by modern educators who have started acknowledging that every student learns differently and at their own pace. For one, others may be more interested in practical, career-based lessons, which are only offered in certain online courses. Whatever the reason, having online learning become more accessible at all levels, has been nothing but beneficial for student learning.
To keep students interested in the prospect of learning, classrooms have always strived to be more engaging. And with technology proving to be more inventive each day, schools are adapting to find exciting applications accordingly.
Written by: Nancy Johnson