Five ways in which technology is transforming education
We are currently living in an era of disruptions, with technology changing at a rate never witnessed before in human history. With the advent of robotics and artificial intelligence, machines are increasingly doing the work that human beings have traditionally done. Consequently, traditional skills are being increasingly rendered redundant. The skills which human beings will need to have a gainful employment are changing completely.
It naturally follows, that the system of education has to change rapidly to ensure that student entering the workforce are equipped with skills relevant to the industry. While experts have expressed concern about the speed (or rather the lack thereof) at which the education sector is changing to keep pace with the times, the fact remains that a transformation is currently underway. Here are a few current trends in education.
Virtual classrooms: Thanks to the proliferation of high speed internet and the constantly falling cost of internet equipped devices, the physical presence of the instructor or, for that matter, even the students in the same location is no longer necessary to conduct a class. It is perfectly possible for a teacher to impart knowledge online to students in a remote location.
The virtual classroom concept is being increasingly used in developing countries to resolve the twin challenges of lack of skilled teachers and the difficult of building infrastructure in remote locations.
Virtual Reality: New technologies like virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality can make the learning process an interactive one in ways that were unimaginable even a decade ago. For instance, students wearing VR headsets can be virtually transported to the Colorado mountain peaks during a geography session. This kind of learning can be very effective as compared to traditional methods, since it is a scientifically proven fact that about two-thirds of all human beings are visual learners.
Learning based evaluation: It is a common trend these days to evaluate students on learning based outcomes using techniques like reaction paper whereby students are required to read a text, thoroughly understand it and then express an opinion based on their analysis of the content. The purpose of such an exercise is to ensure that students are trained to use an analytical approach as well as express their ideas using fact backed evidence.
Artificial Intelligence: The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in education is still at a nascent stage. Nevertheless, we can safely state that its transformative potential is nothing short of profound. For instance, administrative tasks like the paperwork related to admissions, grading the homework, etc can be done by machines. Student support work, insofar as it concerns routine queries, can be done by a chatbot.
In fact, administration is not the only aspect of education in which AI is reducing the need for human intervention. We have already reached a stage where even the pedagogy can be partially done by machines.
Personalised learning: One more aspect of the pedagogy where AI can bring about a massive transformation is in terms of personalisation of the learning experience, allowing students to learn in a manner and at a pace that is best suited to their requirements.