The Rhetorical Acceptance of Using Technology as an Institutional Pedagogy

By Gaurav Goel, Co-Founder, TopRankers

Gaurav Goel, Co-Founder, TopRankers

Headquartered in Bengaluru, TopRankers provides a platform for students from all background to practice mock test which helps them to pursue higher education.

In the past couple of years, innovation in the field of technology has brought about considerable change in several sectors. The education and learning ecosystem in particular, has witnessed positive technological disruption as it has helped this segment set new standards of high quality training and development, specifically at the tertiary education level. Most schools and educational institutions have now begun to encourage the use of state-of-the-art technology within classrooms to facilitate interactive learning for both teachers and students.

Latest Developments in the Field of Education via Utilization of Comprehensive Technology

Advancement in the field of education technology has given rise to several new trends that are either currently being used, or are in the pipeline to be utilized in the near future. Some of the latest developments in this field are as follows:

 

  • Rising importance of Online or E-learning: In the past couple of years, it has been observed that most students prefer online/E-learning methods instead of traditional classroom learning as it can be easily accessedanytime, anywhere. According to some industry experts, students find it easier to get their queries answered from a teacher who is available online as they feel that the former can give them more time, which is usually not possible in conventional classrooms. E-learning platforms facilitate one-on-one interactions between them, allowing students to learn on the go, and get better understanding of any topic for which they require guidance.

 

  • Online Competency-based Learning: While several developments have been made to further improve online learning methods, a new form of skill-based training, viz. Online Competency-based education/training has risen via such advancement. Unlike traditional systems that award maximum credit to students who spent more time learning, the competency-based education model awards credits based on a student’s grasp on a particular subject. This system is used to determinewhether students are proficient enough todemonstratetheir skills, abilities, and knowledge required in an area of study.

 

  • Using Virtual Reality as a means to enable Interactive Learning: Although quite new in the field of education, Virtual Reality is gradually becoming the ‘go-to’ technology for many educational establishments. Virtual Reality systems are designed via computer-based technology that employs specific softwares to create a digital environment with realistic features. Globally, this technology has been utilized for many purposes like therapy and gaming.In the field of education, virtual reality can help students learn about the basics of any subject in a simulated environment, which is usually not possible within the traditional set up. Moreover, it can encourage young scholars to question the norm and develop unique skills & viewpoints to come up withan alternate explanation for the same.

 

  • Online Competitive Examination Preparation steals the show: Internet and Technology has redesigned the rules of education. The competitive exam preparation is digitalized on a large scale so as to make learning a more sophisticated and organized process. Now- a- days, most of the institutes serving for competitive exam preparation prefer to import their content and tests online. This process makes the learning process interactive and dynamic and saves time by instantly providing results and analysis. Moreover, it is also cost effective and scalable. Some of the Prominent Players here are : TopRankers.com,Toppr.com, Byju and Embibe.com

Although the education sector stands to gain positively via such comprehensive technologies, it has only projected how it can benefit students and their learning capabilities. What most failed to consider is the fact that in order to integrate such systems, teachers need to learn to utilize such technologies in order to create a better learning environment, whether offline or online.

Integration of Technology within Classrooms – Why Training Educators to Optimally Utilize Technology is Necessary within this Sector

For any educator or teacher, the most important part of their job is to help their students learn the basics of any subject. Unlike our predecessors, who had to rote their way to learn different subjects, students these days can access the latest educational technology to augment their learning capabilities. Although we have talked about how integration of technology in education has been a great improvement from traditional learning methods, are we sure that students or teachers are actually fulfilling its purpose? Moreover, are teachers fully equipped with the skills required to exploit the benefits of such innovative technology?

According to a 2015 report by Samsung Electronics America and GfK (Germany's largest market research institute), 90 percent of teachers believed that technology in the classroom is important for ensuring a student’s success. However, 60 per cent of teachers felt they are inadequately prepared to use technology within classrooms.

It also stated that most experienced teachers over the age of 40 were not quite confident about their ability to use technology in the classroom. Furthermore, more than one third of educators felt that any kind of training on technology fundamentals could help them in integrating the same within their classrooms easily.

Support of all major stakeholders integral in achieving Optimal Utilization of Education Technology

The Samsung and GfK report highlighted some key issues faced by teachers in integrating technology with education.As stated in the report, almost 32 per cent of teachers surveyed were not satisfied with the support they received from their respectiveeducational institutions in integrating technology within classrooms.While 30 percent of teachers were not satisfied with the quality of or access to technology in their schools, a whopping 70 per cent said that they did not have a dedicated technology center to provide them with additional resources.

More than anything else, this report was significant in stating the fact that in order to integrate technology within schoolrooms, teachers require a dedicated support system that can help them in successfully utilizing technology in their learning pedagogy.

Conclusion

Technology is a vital tool in the field of education that can help teachers in transforming traditional learning methodologies. However, as mentioned above, it is imperative for educators to understand the technical know-how of such systems prior to integrating them within classrooms, and they can only accomplish that with a steady support system.

Additionally, making the best use of technology tools made available for both teachers and studentscan benefit both parties. While these systems can improve student engagement inside classrooms, the same can assist teachers in determining which technology tools work best based on their requirements.

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