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Explore, Engage, Experience and Empower Education

D. Sudhanva

Technology in Education

The Transformation of ideologies from “Nice-to-have” to “Must-have” technology in education.

Technology in education was always considered to be one of those 'smart' additions to learning.

In fact, as the need for Smartboards emerged, several schools came forward to reap its benefits.

However, to a certain extent, these boards started losing their efficacy and here’s why:

    • Most schools started using these boards only as a factor of portraying themselves as a “Smart/Fashionable School”.
    • Video content was played on these smartboards when teachers were called in absent.
    • The benefit of one-on-one interactions, the efficacy of the amount of explanation needed for a particular concept, and the identification of body language and eye contact of the students were lost.
    • And soon, as schools incurred additional costs for the same and the lack of interest in parents with schools having these boards forced a number of schools to limit the use of these boards.

The Evolution of Learning Management System and its need in present day-

As we evolved at the pace of the evolution of Technology, Learning Management Systems suddenly found their place in the US, and then within a matter of time other countries picked it up as well.

These LMS platforms gained much traction with their key feature being: Study anytime, anywhere with live interactive sessions, assignments and quizzes online. The sum total of the power of a Learning Management System with that of the internet made the fundamental value system of eLearning or education technology happen.

LMS also came with its own drawbacks such as the lack of simplicity in usage and too many features to configure. However, a “One-size-fits-one” approach of catering to the individual needs of each educational institution and what they deal with i.e., School Education, Higher Education, Centres for Competitive exam training etc, solved this.

The Pandemic and its major influence on the usage of Technology in Education.

The Pandemic has taught us a lot of things in many ways and most of us chose individual aspects of it, making it the “New Normal” in terms of adapting to a routine as a mode of fighting back.

Offices switched to Zoom calls for meetings, whereas schools switched to Online Classes which made Technology a ”Must-have” factor for every educational sector globally. 

However, the question here was, how effective are these Online Classes? What learning outcomes could the teachers track?

Fortunately, technology had answers of its own and all key stakeholders in the education sector, and the testing sector evolved and adapted to it, contributing significantly to the maturity of using technology in education.

Conducting virtual activities, collaborative tasks and even conducting test and assessment papers were made possible with making paper and pen exams becoming a fast disappearing approach.

Education post-pandemic is also likely to bring in a drastic change, not in terms of evading traditional methodologies of Teaching-Learning processes, but in terms of bringing in the right balance between technology and education to create a blended learning experience.

The Use of Podcasts to learn on the go-

When the Pandemic hit the nation, as mentioned earlier, most schools switched towards learning through Zoom calls, with lesser interaction and the need for consumption of more content at once.

This put teachers in a state of jeopardy with not being able to complete the required syllabus on time, due to overloading of information and the lack of required learning outputs delivered by the students.

For this, schools gradually discovered podcasts as another great way of teaching new content to their students.

Students could listen to them at their own pace and gradually get themselves sunk into some great content that not just kept them engaged, but also kept them informed about the various updates happening across the globe.

Effective use of Digital Content and Technology by Teachers.

Technology and digital content should support and empower the teacher to deliver effective sessions in his or her own inimitable style.

Each teacher is different, and they evolve different teaching styles, many times also factoring in the ability of the class of students.

Digital content can be in any form i.e., Videos, Concepts, PPT’s, Notes or even Quizzes in order to create a collaborative learning experience.

However, it is based on the teacher's ability to interact with their students with this combination of teaching methods.

How we learn, and how we teach is different for different age groups. Technology tools and digital content have to be more tightly glued. The educational institutions need to witness clear segmentation of content requirements for each particular age or class of students.

This also makes it easier for Digital Content creators to maximize the efficacy of content delivery, leading to a higher level of understanding for students. 

Conclusion

Our education systems, particularly school education systems have always been too well organised and less predictable. The education systems were driven by Curriculum frameworks, National Education standards and clearly defined learning outcomes etc.


However, the given situation of the Pandemic forcefully changed the methodologies of Teaching-Learning processes, leading to the inability of setting targets for learning outcomes from its students.

The situation also caused a lot of panic and anxiety amongst teachers and other people, leading to anger, resentment, fatigue, negativity, fear and a sense of inevitability.

Wouldn’t it be wiser of us to leverage technology to its fullest to fight this together? New wisdom of positivity, creativity and a constructive approach is crucial. The new wisdom that can help us create systems, education, environment, behaviour, tolerance to diversity, the pathway to peaceful living and individual and community wellbeing.

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