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By: Ronda PaynePublished On: July 4, 2019
The world is moving faster and making great strides on a daily basis. A lot of these changes are happening at such a rapid pace due, in part, to technology and its ability to deliver more information around the world in an instant. This, in turn, has had a positive impact on the way education is delivered as it has created more options and greater flexibility for learners. No longer do students have to rely solely on an in-person instructor and textbooks. They have a diverse range of resources and options to choose from.
Students today have the option of choosing the best learning methods to meet their specific style. Schools and educators in general also have several opportunities now to rethink their teaching methodologies.
Students today can access information using their tools at a speed they are comfortable with. Before, if a student wanted to work remotely, the only option was to do so by mail correspondence. This method was time-consuming and cost both the student and the educational institution a significant amount in printing and postage expenses. When the wave of technology first hit, access to lessons was granted through email or online password-protected websites. Even though this was an improvement, the learning experience was still not seamless.
Fast-forward a few years. Lessons can now be stored in the cloud. Instructors can pre-record sessions and lectures, allowing students to access this content whenever, from their laptops, phones, and tablets even.
Camera-enabled laptops and tablets, along with live-feed technology, have made it possible for lessons to be taught live where teachers and students can interact in real time. While a live lesson is at a set time, like a standard in-class lesson, students also have the option of watching the lessons later as they are recorded. Learners attend these live sessions via special software and applications without leaving their homes. Since the learning experience is so life-like, students feel as though they are in class with their peers, even though their classmates could be sitting at a café or a library in another country.
Live classes allow students to live and work away from the school and program of their choice without missing out on the education they want.
Apart from offering remote learning options, live online courses and programs are also sometimes offered at a reduced fee compared to the in-class option.
From boring classes where the teacher made the students open a textbook and read from it to today’s interactive, smart classes, things have changed dramatically. Technology has transformed the role of a teacher. IPads and styluses have replaced chalks and boards. They have gone from playing a traditional teacher’s role to that of a facilitator, and are using technology to engage students and facilitate exciting and interesting lessons.
Teachers are employing technology to allow their students to guide their own learning and find out solutions for problems. By letting them explore the subject through technology, they enable the students to engage with that subject deeply.
Some instructors have moved further ahead by accessing educational games and tools to help students learn new things in a format they are adept with. Additionally, technology has made it possible for teachers to bring exciting speakers to the classroom.
Moreover, internet, peer-to-peer media and live conferencing have also made it possible for anyone with expertise in any area to create their own courses and programs. While such programs may not be endorsed by a school or an educational institution, they add to the options available to students who are clamouring for more information and looking to improve their skills.
Technology has allowed us to move from one-way communication (traditional media like TV, newspapers, radio) to two-way communication, (through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Live Chat). People can reach out and seek answers and express opinions at any time. Students and teachers can receive and exchange inputs, feedback, and suggestions in real time.
Feedback doesn't always need to be negative, of course. Often glowing responses and reviews could lead to more opportunities. Being online is not optional for education institutions anymore because their students are online.
Wise educators will keep up with these changes to enhance, improve and change the way they teach in today’s new and modern world where education can no longer sit still between the pages of a textbook.
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