Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for good technology in the education system has never been more apparent. Last year, many students and their teachers were thrown into an unexpected distancing learning situation, which would not have been possible without modern technologies that we all take for granted like the internet, computers, and video conferencing facilities. Schools, colleges, and universities were able to keep the learning going with Zoom classes and uploaded online learning materials. In the past, a situation like the one that we saw last year would have had education grind to a halt.
It is clear to see that technology plays a huge part in shaping the education system as we know it today, but aside from Zoom classrooms in a pandemic, how else do students and teachers benefit from technology in the classroom?
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Education at Your Fingertips
Today, learning something new has never been easier. How often do you ask Google for the answer to a question? Learning materials are abundant online. It only takes a few searches to bring up peer-reviewed documents and studies, presentations, and even entire eBooks, that you can access instantly. For both students and teachers, the Information Age has proven itself to be one of the best times to learn. Along with providing easy access to a whole realm of information, it has also helped students develop more critical thinking and good research skills as they filter through online information to determine what’s real and what isn’t.
And for teachers who are looking to further their own education and rise through the ranks, there has never been a better time than the present. This MA Education distance learning programme can be gained online, giving teachers of today a huge advantage over those in the past. Getting a master’s degree online provides teachers with much more flexibility and makes it easier for them to achieve their career goals.
Engagement with Learning Material
Today’s technology is more interactive than ever before. Students are learning more and more by researching, getting stuck in, and receiving feedback. For example, geography students are no longer simply looking at pictures but using interactive software like Google Earth or Google Maps to study an area.
As a result, this allows students to get more excited about what they are learning and develop their interests and passions further. It allows students to feel more involved with the subjects that they are studying since the experience is much more personalised compared to reading a book, for example.
Bring Subjects to Life
Today, simulation software is used increasingly more often in the classroom to present activities that would be impossible without this technology. Specific simulation tools allow students to get involved in a wide range of experiences that would not have been possible otherwise, such as watching planetary movements, looking at how dinosaurs used to live, or even studying the early movements and developments of tornados and other natural events.
Simulation technology and modelling software offer a huge range of interactive features that allow students to interact with the learning materials more and see dynamic characteristics up close.
The internet has spurred on a time of widespread discussion and debate, and this has spread into the classroom. Today’s teachers encourage their students to use real-world issues as a means of learning. For example, in 2020, the Black Lives Matter marches prompted many teachers to spend some time teaching their students about the reasons and the history behind the marches.
Students can use the internet to research real-life issues that are happening right now, which may be related in some way to the curriculum that they are currently studying. As a result, students are no longer simply reading about things in books but are able to apply their lessons to real people and real situations.
Education that is focused on technology does not isolate students from one another. While there is still a place and time for students to study by themselves, technology-based learning is more interactive and discussion-based. Students will often learn within groups, taking part in discussions, debates, and activities. Along with providing an ideal environment for students to learn a new subject, this type of learning also helps the students develop a wide range of transferable skills including teamwork, research, debating skills and more.
Learning is no longer seen as something that we all need to do, involving spending hours of the day staring into the pages of a book. Rather, modern educators know that students of all ages are more likely to take in and retain information if it is delivered in a way that is fun and enjoyable to them. And, technology-based learning provides the perfect platform from which to do this. Today’s technology-based lessons involve games, quizzes, and other fun and interactive situations where students will learn something new while socializing and having fun at the same time.
Today, schools are more interconnected than ever before. Classes are no longer limited to only learning with each other, as it’s possible to contact people from all over the world using the internet. Discussions boards and forums are often used to connect students and teachers with others around the world, allowing them to get opinions, advice, feedback, and support that they might not have been able to access otherwise.
Teachers as Coaches
Thanks to the role of technology, the modern teaching role is more of a coaching position. Teachers are no longer the instructor stood at the front of the class teaching a lesson, but rather somebody who coaches students through learning new things, offering support, guidance, and feedback when it is needed. Teachers do not only help students when it comes to learning the course materials, but they are also there to help their students develop a range of important skills in areas such as research, decision-making, and problem-solving.
In 2020, we all saw just how important technology is in education today. But, there’s much more to education technology than Zoom classes.
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