5 Ways Technology Impacts Learning Today

5 Ways Technology Impacts Learning Today
Summary: There is virtually no area of life that has not somehow been touched by advances in computer science. One area that has undergone a significant revolution is education. This article will discuss 5 ways in which technology impacts learning.

How Technology Impacts Learning Today

Computer and communications technology have changed the way human beings live. In the past, if someone wished to learn something, they went to a school and studied directly under an instructor. Nowadays, however, it is possible to take courses, and even earn degrees without ever stepping foot in a building. In addition, non-degree learning, in the forms of continuing education, exam prep, or professional education, has become more accessible than ever through new eLearning and mLearning technologies. Here are some of the ways in which technology impacts learning:

1. Accessibility

There are at least several ways in which technology has made learning more accessible. First, learning opportunities are no longer restricted to those who have the time to attend in-person classes. Technology, such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets, allows users to take classes and to engage in exam prep activities wherever and whenever they wish. In addition, mobile media options allow learners to choose the medium (video, eBooks, interactive quizzes) that is best for their learning style.

Finally, online and mobile learning options offer significant opportunities for collaboration. Learners have the opportunity to interact with people all over the world as they develop their academic knowledge and professional skills. Collaborative learning is important in an era where national borders are no longer as important as they were when it comes to doing business.

2. Motivation And Accountability

Mobile learning apps such as those created by Pocket Prep offer instant feedback on what the user has learned. As the learner becomes more proficient, he or she can track their progress and stay motivated. This same feature also holds learners accountable. Since their work is automatically being graded and recorded, the user cannot dodge the reality of underperformance. This can serve as a reality check for someone who may need to focus more on learning order receive additional help. In fact, mobile apps and computer programs do a very efficient job at pinpointing those areas in which the learner has difficulty and needs assistance.

3. Cost Effectiveness

Publishing print exam prep guides, textbooks, and other physical learning materials are expensive, and those costs are passed on to learners. The same holds true for teaching in a traditional classroom environment. While there is certainly a place for standard books and classes, new technologies have made it less expensive for students to get the education or exam preparation that they need. This not only makes learning opportunities far more accessible, but it also evens the playing field between learners who may come from different economic backgrounds.

4. Convenience

Not so long ago, adults typically worked nine-to-five jobs, five days a week. In this new economy, however, people often find themselves working on weekends and evenings. This makes it difficult to take classes that meet at a specific time. Asynchronous learning is now a real possibility with the advent of mobile learning options. For example, smartphone and tablet apps allow working adults to sneak in some study time whenever they have a few extra minutes at lunch or during a break.

5. Relevancy

Before internet use became widespread, instructional material had to undergo a lengthy publication process. After publication, changes would require a significant amount of work as the material would need to be republished. The process of republication was costly in terms of both time and money. Newer technologies allow content producers to easily change online content, apps and eBooks so that the information remains accurate and up-to-date. This helps ensure that learners are receiving the freshest, most accurate information and training available. Mastery of industry knowledge correlates with success in passing exams as well as on-the-job performance.

The only thing that may restrict the ways in which technology impacts learning is a lack of understanding about these new learning options and how they work. It is important for educators and administrators to learn more about available options so that they can integrate them into educational programs as well as counseling for students and potential students. Similarly, HR departments and professional development staffs need to stay on top of these technological advances so as to incorporate available products into the workplace culture.