Emerging Technologies And The Way Students Learn
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Emerging Technologies: Changing The Way Student Learn

Technology is increasingly becoming commonplace in the recent educational scenario. Leveraging technology in the classroom enhances teaching and learning and it adds a new dimension to the overall learning experience.

Learning has already progressed from the traditional textbook-based approach toward a more technology-driven one. An estimated $13.2 billion are currently being spent by educational institutes on EdTech each year. The widespread access to technology and the internet through smartphones and computers has transformed the way conventional education system functions.

Emerging technologies, like Artificial Intelligence, Big Data analytics, cloud computing, Augmented and Virtual Reality, are already finding their footing in the learning industry. The application of emerging technology trends will lead to a transformation of educational models and completely reimagine the way students approach learning.

Here are 5 key ways in which emerging technologies could impact education in the days to come.

1. A Rise In Blended Learning Environments

The preference toward courses that combine conventional, face-to-face learning with technological features of online learning environments is increasing. Augmenting the current education system with smart learning methods using mobile apps, tablets, and laptops is gradually becoming the norm.

While this doesn’t imply that the value of face-to-face instructional components is going to diminish anytime soon, the demand for courses that have incorporated online components is giving rise to blended learning environments.

These make learning interactive and easily accessible for the students. They no longer have to be contained within the confines of the classroom to have an engaging learning experience. The rise of virtual online courses has led to the incorporation of flexibility in the course schedule.

Flexible courses that facilitate learning on demand have gradually become a reality. This gives the students the freedom to choose the duration of the course that best suits their preferences instead of having a rigid start and end date with fixed timing. With the gradual shift in the market toward the gig economy, education methodologies have to transition from convention toward innovation.

2. Personalization Of Learning

The use of Artificial Intelligence algorithms in the field of education has the potential to empower students and result in the personalization of a curriculum to meet a student’s individual needs. By comprehensively analyzing a student’s learning patterns and historical study behavior, learning analytics can be applied to the data collected.

The creation of education-based mobile apps that harness the power of AI to determine student engagement and learning output is already underway. In August 2019, Google announced the release of the revamped version of its AI-based learning app, Socratic, which allows students to ask questions in the form of voice or picture input. The app then harnesses algorithms to search for relevant answers on the web, helping students to grasp underlying concepts. It also allows students to effectively break down their lessons into smaller bite-sized fragments for microlearning.

Google’s entry into the eLearning space is just the beginning of the transformation that the industry is to witness in the coming days. AI-based applications could potentially be able to track student’s progress, issue warnings to the teacher if a student is lagging behind, get automated reminders about project submission deadlines and come up with a personalized learning plan according to individual student data.

Instead of a one-size-fits-all approach to classroom learning, custom learning experiences, which are based on custom software, can result in the personalization of learning experiences.

3. Automation In Education

The incorporation of automation and Artificial Intelligence algorithms in the education sector has the potential to significantly reduce the administrative load on the educators. Using technology and AI for the automation of repetitive tasks could result in faster assessments of projects and assignments. The technology also has the potential to eliminate the problem of subjectivity from assessments and result in a uniform grading methodology that is universally applicable—minus the human bias.

EdTech has the potential to increase the level of productivity of both teachers as well as students. The use of speech-to-text algorithms can help students take class notes in a more effective and speedy manner. Automation gives educators a chance to focus more on actually teaching and interacting with students by freeing them from their administrative responsibilities.

4. Immersive Learning Experiences

With the use of technologies like Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, students are presented with a visually stimulating environment that makes learning a more immersive experience for the students. VR/AR has widespread application in early learning stages as well as advanced learning. Using this technology, students can get immersive and experiential learning from the confines of the classroom.

Google is making swift progress in this arena as well. Google expeditions take the students on virtual field trips using AR/VR and mixed reality without them ever having to leave the classroom. Teachers can guide students through collections of 360-degree scenes and 3D objects, making classrooms truly places without boundaries.

The technology can also be harnessed by advanced learning, like in the field of medicine. Surgeons and medical professionals in training can visualize the components of the human body by using VR/AR, resulting in an immersive and hands-on learning experience.

Gamification is yet another method that is highly successful in creating immersive learning environments. It makes studying fun and engaging. The application of this technology isn’t just limited to course-based learning. It also has the potential to be utilized in employee training programs and as a part of employee onboarding activities.

5. Smart Learning Environments

The use of interactive applications and devices can lead to the development of smart learning environments. The Internet of Things (IoT) based solution focuses on the use of smart devices for skill enhancement and the personalization of learning. The use of mobility strategies to drive engagement and facilitate learning at any time and from anywhere is an important component of smart learning environments.

The use of IoT in education makes learning more accessible while increasing the efficiency of teaching methodologies. The use of mobile apps, laptops, and tablets is already becoming a part of a student’s everyday life.

In the future, the use of connected devices, such as smartwatches and eReaders, has the ability to transform learning as we know it. Instead of being inhibited by time and place, the transfer of knowledge could shift from the domain of the classroom to the fingertips of the students, improving accessibility multifold. The amalgamation of technology and education is surely a step in the right direction.