NMC Horizon Report 2013 K-12 - Summary and Full Report

NMC Horizon Report 2013 K-12 - Summary and Full Report

The NMC Horizon Report 2013 (K-12 Edition) Report is out and there is lot of information that can help education leaders, trustees, policy makers, and others easily understand the impact of key emerging technologies in education. 

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NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition, examines emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and creative expression within the environment of pre-college education. The NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition is produced by the NMC in collaboration with the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN)  and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), with the generous support of HP’s Sustainability & Social Innovation team.   

Key points (Summary) from the Report are mentioned below:

The six technologies featured in the NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition are placed along three adoption horizons that indicate likely timeframes for their entrance into mainstream use for teaching, learning, and creative inquiry. The near-term horizon assumes the likelihood of entry into the mainstream for K-12 institutions within the next 12 months; the mid-term horizon, within two to three years; and the far-term, within four to five years.


Within the next 12 months Cloud computing and Mobile learning will see widespread adoption in K-12. These two sets of technologies have become a pervasive part of everyday life in much of the world, and are growing everywhere. Students have ever-increasing expectations of being able to work, play, and learn via cloud-based services and apps across their mobile devices, whenever they want and wherever they may be.   

  • Cloud computing has already transformed the way users of the Internet think about computing and communication, data storage and access, and collaborative work. Cloud-based applications and services are available to many school students today, and more schools are employing cloud-based tools all the time. Now schools are outsourcing significant parts of their infrastructure, such as email and backups, to cloud providers. Emerging devices, such as Google’s Chromebooks, are designed expressly to operate in  the cloud and have entered  the market    
    at affordable prices, making them viable options for one-to-one learning. These developments have contributed considerably to the adoption     of cloud computing approaches at K-12 schools across the globe.
  • Mobile learning is becoming an integral part of K-12 education, as it is increasingly common for students to own and use portable devices. With easy to use, touchscreen interfaces, even the youngest children can easily pick up a tablet or smartphone and interact with it almost immediately. Mobile devices are gateways to endless learning, collaboration, and productivity fostered by the Internet. In recent years, schools have been implementing one-to-one and BYOD strategies to take advantage of mobile technologies that are more accessible and pervasive with each passing year. One of the fastest growing facets of mobiles are mobile apps, and the momentum has yet to slow down. Scores of education companies and websites are creating responsive programs, platforms, and curricula for mobile devices. Moreover, app development and programming is being taught to K-12 students in schools and after-school programs.



In the second adoption horizon, two to three years out, adoptions of two technologies that are experiencing growing interest within K-12 education are expected to pass the 20% penetration point that marks entry into mainstream practice: these are learning analytics and open content.

  • Open content is the current form of a movement that began a decade ago, when universities such as MIT began to make their course content freely available. Twelve years later, schools are sharing a significant amount of curricula, resources, and  learning materials. There is a growing variety of open content from K-12 organizations and schools, and in many parts of the world, open content represents a profound shift in the way students study and learn.   
  • Learning analytics is the field associated with deciphering trends and patterns from educational big data, or huge sets of student-related data, to further the advancement of a personalized, supportive system of K-12 education. Preliminary uses of student data were directed toward targeting at-risk learners in order to improve student retention. The widespread adoption of learning and course management systems has refined the outcomes of learning analytics to look at students more precisely.



On the far-term horizon, set at four to five years away from entry into the mainstream of practice, are 3D printing and virtual and remote laboratories.   

  • 3D printing has become much more affordable and accessible in recent years in large part due to the efforts of MakerBot Industries. Founded in 2009, this company has promoted the idea of openness by offering products that can be built by anyone with minimal technical expertise. With MakerBot Replicators selling in the range of $1,500 to $3,000, it now only requires a small financial investment to own a 3D printer.
  • Virtual and remote laboratories leverage wireless networks, mobile devices, and cloud-based software to make scientific experiences more accessible for    
    schools that lack fully equipped labs. In many ways, virtual and remote labs have benefits that hands on environments do not; in virtual and remote environments, an experiment can be conducted numerous times with greater efficiency and precision.  

You can find the NMC Report 2013 Higher Education Edition here: NMC Horizon Report 2013 (Higher Education Edition) .

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