Education technology has completely revolutionized the way we learn and teach. With constant advancements in technology more educators and students are adopting newer IT tools to create a better learning experience and achieve the desired academic outcomes.
Moreover, EdTech has also enabled adult learners to acquire new skills needed for professional development. But is educational technology simply a trend which we are following without a second thought? Or is information technology actually helping to improve education? Let's have a look....
Information Technology & Education
It is no mystery that EdTech has completely transformed the teaching and learning process by providing new technological tools to face traditional challenges. As information technology (IT) is greatly impacting almost all academic areas, IT itself has become a significant field of study. Technology has effectively turned learning into a perpetual activity by offering easy global communication and rapid access to a sea of information. With instant communication and fast access to IT at both work and home, technological progress demands continuous analysis of the learning process.
Why We Need EdTech
With the information technology, educators can effectively customise the learning content as well as the delivery of instruction to fit the needs of different types of learners. This will enable institutions to better accommodate the different learning styles of individual students. As a result, in the near future students can opt for the most appropriate instructional format for their individual knowledge level. They can choose to go for face-to-face learning, blended learning, or even fully online courses depending on their knowledge level on the topic.Although EdTech will not replace traditional learning completely, it will certainly enhance the learning experience and improve the learning outcomes for students.
Here are a few reasons why we need information technology in education-
- Technology offers instant access to learning resources anytime anywhere for life long learning
- Information is key in this digital age and EdTech offers easy access to learners to a sea of information
- Information Technology enables educators in meeting the requirements of different types of learners
- Technological literacy will enable learners to drive our society towards development
- IT can actually help to reduce the cost of education and help us tackle illiteracy effectively
Using IT Tools To Improve EdTech
Although various academic institutions use EdTech tools in different yet successful ways, like using blended learning approach, flipped classrooms, distance learning, distributed learning, collaborating with e-learning firms, we have actually come a long way in implementing technology to improve education. There is no doubt that IT enables institutions to discover new ways for managing higher education and learners. Hence, a new breed of academic leaders are looking for new and advanced EdTech tools which will help them to operate in data-driven perspective.
Dr. Diana G. Oblinger, president and CEO of EDUCAUSE, believes there are a number of reasons why we use educational technology tools in learning. She said “There are a number of significant drivers. One is technology itself. Technology challenges people's assumptions about what it means to be educated. Technology and globalisation have changed the way we do business; as a result, we have seen the emergence of a lifelong learning culture, one in which education allows us to keep pace with change.” She added, “...technology changes both the ways in which we learn and the ways in which we conceive of the learning process. IT tools provide just-in-time learning, knowledge management, simulation, and visualisation.”
However, there is another important factor...the learners. In this digital age, the type of students have changed completely from traditional students. The fact is typical college students do not exist anymore. Dr. Oblinger said “We have many more first generation college students; we have older students; and we have students attending college without a degree as their ultimate goal. As a result of the diversity of students, institutions face increasingly divergent student expectations and are using IT to customize services in order to meet those expectations. ”
What We Should Do
There is no doubt that information technology and EdTech tools are valuable not just for educators but also for learners. The fact is education technology is the way of the future and hence to make sure we use it the best possible way, we must make sure there are adequate well trained IT professionals who can make further innovations and advancements in EdTech. Moreover, learners must also realise that IT is a lucrative career option for them with increasing number of IT firms looking for trained professionals in this field.
If you wish to build your career in the IT sector then pursuing information technology courses online from any MOOC institute or Online Business School can be highly beneficial for you as you will be able to learn necessary skills and knowledge in an affordable, flexible and convenient manner. As the demand for online IT degrees keep rising,you will get the best job opportunities in leading IT companies. Moreover, you will also be able to develop and design new EdTech tools to help improve education and create a better learning experience.
How do you think technology impacts education? How will EdTech change learning in future? Share your ideas and views with us by commenting here.