When we look to the future, there are few things that can influence our paths more than education. A rich education can provide countless opportunities to the leaders of tomorrow and is vital for continued growth and development.
As the landscape of technology has changed and rapidly expanded in recent years, traditional classrooms have been transformed. Some of these exciting developments include online learning, virtual reality, 3D printing, artificial intelligence, and social networking.
Each of these innovations plays a crucial role in making education more accessible. With each advancement, more students can receive a personalized learning experience and go places they've never even dreamed of. Keep reading to learn about these transformative pieces of tech.
There are very few opportunities technological innovations as sought after as artificial intelligence, or AI. AI is being relied on to help overworked teachers manage diverse classrooms and help all students achieve their full potential.
AI is a great tool to help special needs students understand material. AI is, at its base, formulaic-it works in coded patterns and can relay information about writing and mathematics in clear terms. It also grows with a student, giving those with autism or intellectual disabilities a personalized tutor.
In addition, AI has become a teaching staple in some classrooms for grading. Teachers can get bogged down with endless tests and essays. AI technology can search for errors, provide a grade, and even leave valuable feedback.
You might be wondering how social media could constitute a technological innovation in education. Did you know that Facebook was first developed by Mark Zuckerberg to connect his college? Long before it became a platform for memes and games, it was a valuable tool for peers to stay in touch through different class and work schedules.
Facebook and Twitter, among other forms of social networking, are still a valuable tool for connecting students. They can be used to help coordinate meetings, contests, study groups, and clubs. In fact, some college clubs and programs require participants to communicate through social media.
Overall, this is an excellent tool for all the extracurricular activities that help round out a student's education. It might not be involved directly in teaching, but college campuses certainly wouldn't be able to function the same without such a stable platform over which they could connect.
If there's any singular technical invention that looms ahead as a way to radically transform traditional classroom environments, it's Virtual Reality. VR headsets and software have been fantasized about since the advent of science fiction, but it's not fictional anymore.
While a standard VR headset costs a minimum of several hundred dollars apiece, its flexibility in a learning environment is invaluable. There's unlimited potential for the application of VR. What could you learn if you could experience anything in 3D?
One possibility for VR is dissecting animals. This is a controversial animal-rights issue, and plenty of students are disgusted or morally opposed to dissection. Even so, it's a valuable learning tool to understanding the physiology and anatomy of different creatures. VR learning allows students to see how anatomical aspects function in 3D-no animal required.
Virtual reality learning also provides a portal from the classroom to the rest of the world. You could visit famous museums, like the Smithsonian or the Louvre, or walk through the Colosseum. The depth of education possible with VR has no limits.
Cloud Computing and Online Learning
Online learning has seen a spike in popularity for the last decade, and it's not hard to see why. Distance education is a flexible way for students of all ages to access classes and earn degrees. From primary school to university, online classes have helped students receive a quality education around the world.
There have been some recent developments that have improved the online learning experience. First of all, many schools have uploaded every resource possible to a cloud. These hubs of information can be accessed by all students and contain valuable info. Everything from textbooks to math worksheets and video lectures can be accessed from home.
Students can download what they need, when they need it. Many classes also allow all assignments to be submitted digitally. Teachers and tutors can then receive though assignments and submit their feedback and grade through the same cloud. All you need is a computer or laptop to have a full education at your fingertips.
3D printing is an exciting advancement that's currently being installed in classrooms across the world. The benefits of 3D printing in education are two-fold. First, this tech gives students a great way to practice their computer coding and software skills. Getting to design a 3D object and see it brought to life has inspired many students to continue learning computer science.
It's also a great way to make certain concepts more exciting to students. From printing a DNA structure to exploring mathematical concepts, 3D objects help make difficult concepts easier to understand through a hands-on approach.
It's not hard to see all the benefits that technological innovation and incorporation can provide. These ingenious pieces of tech can make education more accessible to students around the world. Being able to experience museums and faraway places can enrich any classroom experience.
It's also a great relief for teachers catering to diverse classrooms. We've achieved all this by 2020, which only leaves one question: what will the future hold? What classroom advancements will be made in another decade?
About the Author
This article was written by Scarlett Hobler. She has spent years working in education and is a leading expert in her field. Hobler works as an education blogger and a valued writer at PapersOwl, a platform that connects students with valuable tools and resources. In addition to dedicating her life to helping students achieve success, Hobler is an avid writer who has been published in many initial journals. Her insights into the landscape of innovation have proven invaluable to teachers and students everywhere.