Education Technology: 2 Ways Education Has Dramatically Changed Since You Went to School

2 Facts About Education Technology  

If, like me, you went to school in the 90s, your biggest challenge (besides getting a bf) may have been hastily trying to scribble notes on loose leaf paper while your teacher lectured and wrote on a chalkboard. Now that I’m all grown up and working with a client in the education technology niche though, I’m blown away by how far things have progressed.

Learning through the use of technologically advanced tools is called education technology. This covers an array of particular technological instruments, such as networking hardware, computers, media, TV, apps and the Internet. Utilizing these tools for education has become more popular than you realize.

Here are a few things that I have learned as a 40ish education technology marketer in 2015:

  1. Access to education has come a long way.
    A little over 50 years ago, the majority of schools had only a small handful of different classes to choose from and only 18 credits were typically required to graduate from high school. Half a century later, some states have added another 10 credits (i.e. another year) to graduate, and a mind-boggling variety of different classes have rolled out. There are now a versatile number of foreign, music, arts, sports, marketing, medical, and many more classes for prospective students to choose from. Education has gained a lot of traction since the 90s in part thanks to technology. Since classrooms switched to virtual platforms and thousands of educational services are being offered, access to better learning equipment has been made readily available to the public. For example, students wanted textbooks and other learning material to be easier to obtain, so many websites now sell them for very cheap, sometimes free, and they even have online versions as well that are much more affordable to download. Other colleges are following along with MIT to make courses free and available online. While these courses do not typically provide a real diploma at the end, it allows individuals to extend their education and not become out of practice while they wait to take accredited courses to get their degree or certification. With the invention of the internet alone, students today now have a much greater access to any knowledge they choose to soak up.
  2. Technology has invaded the modern classroom.
    Common instruments used in teaching plans were tape players, record players, reel to reel projectors, and other types of educational tools that are considered antique today. Since then, education technology has taken off, turning entire classrooms virtual. In just less than a century the world went from using pen and paper or a typewriter to using keyboards, touchscreens, and 3D printers; a very dramatic change. There are so many technological advances now being utilized for education that it has become necessary for some educators to adopt a learning management system for their classrooms. BrightSpace, for example, is a Learning Management System that takes care of a multitude of educator needs, such as employee training, K-12 education, and higher education as well. In Ohio, there’s a teacher whose students have access to some 30 iPods that she uses to deliver pop quizzes that help her determine her students’ learning success rate. This has been made possible by a company that specializes in audience response solutions for education. At the Trinity Meadows Intermediate school in Texas, you will find students that are glued to their mobile phones for educational purposes. This is because the teachers there are exploring the educational use of smartphones as a learning and communication device, seeing as kids are often distracted by them anyway.

Given that most students have an inherent desire to learn and there are plenty of resources, courses, and material to give them what they want, the only thing stopping the floodgate of knowledge is that educators are sometimes unaware of what tools are available. That's why education technology marketing will always play a part in the development and future of education technology.

And, if educators continue to embrace modern technologies into their classrooms, there’s no limit to how students will be learning in the future. A virtual field trip to Mars anyone?