Learning Powered By Technology

learning power educational technology edtech

Nowadays, increasing numbers of schools are embracing educational technology to support both teaching and learning. In fact, educational technology’s importance has never been more evident— or relevant —than today. 

What Is Educational Technology? 

Educational technology, also referred to as EdTech, involves the combined use of hardware, software, technological processes, and educational resources in order to deliver better teaching and learning experiences for improved academic performance. Using different EdTech tools, teachers and students are able to make more active choices about how to obtain, generate, manipulate, and display information. 

What Is The Importance Of Technology In Education? 

Educational technology delivers a series of benefits and reasons why education institutions should opt for various EdTech tools. By integrating educational technology into curriculums, an institution will be able to: 

• Redefine the traditional teaching methods in order to better meet the evolving needs of students and employment markets 

• Provide access to a wide range of educational resources, platforms, and programs 

• Enable teachers and students to keep up with evolving technologies 

• Help students better understand the real world by allowing educators to use different tools (e.g. virtual tours, animation, prototyping, etc.) that go beyond the physical barriers of the classroom 

• Encourage students to handle more complex assignments, work cooperatively, and provide peer tutoring 

• Prepare students for the workforce by helping them to acquire new technical skills and get familiar with various computer programs and tools (e.g. electronic whiteboards, electronic calendars, teleconferencing, etc.) 

• Better address diversity in learning styles in order to support different types of learners 

• Make teaching and learning more enjoyable and meaningful 

• Enhance the relationship between teachers and learners 

• Reduce the cost of education 

Types Of Educational Technology 

To make better use of EdTech tools, it’s important to understand the differences among the different types of educational technology currently available. These are: 

Custom Learning Experiences 

With the help of educational technology, teachers are able to optimize education systems and teaching methodologies for the needs of each learner. For instance, a teacher could use EdTech tools to create different menus of learning experiences and custom-fit lessons that are more engaging and relevant to students. 

Virtual Reality (VR) And Augmented Reality (AR) 

Virtual and augmented learning changes the way information is delivered. Using VR and AR, a school could offer its students virtual biology, anatomy, chemistry, and physics labs. Some teachers also use 2D and 3D videos, virtual tours, animation, podcasts, and other forms of VR and AR technologies regularly to enrich learning experiences and make content more comprehensible. 

3D Printing 

Enabling the creation of physical three-dimensional objects, 3D printing can enhance the visuo-spatial abilities of students. The use of this technology in schools can turn students-as-passive consumers of information into students-as-active creators through the conception, design, and execution of different projects. 

Digital Signage 

Digital signage provides a new means of communication in the form of a centrally controlled content distribution network. One of the benefits of using digital signage in schools is that it can convey information to all students and school staff simultaneously, in a non-intrusive way. 

Typically, digital signage networks are used to display general announcements, event schedules, alerts, content from Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google Sheets, social media feeds, world news, revenue-driving/fundraising activities, etc. Through the use of digital signage, school administrators can also sync different messages with scheduled events. 

A screen presenting additional learning materials while promoting an event, math club, literacy sessions, or other things is a good example of digital signage in K-12 schools

Learning Analytics 

Using learning analytics, teachers are able to measure academic performance and understand how students learn. Access to data from students’ learning processes can help educators optimize their teaching methods and improve the effectiveness of their teaching practices accordingly. 

Cloud Computing 

Adopting cloud-based applications in education is a great way to enhance accessibility while reducing IT costs considerably. Besides allowing teachers and students to store massive amounts of data on multiple virtual servers, cloud-based apps provide access to up-to-date information from anywhere at any time. With cloud computing advancements in education, students and teachers can share documents, collaborate remotely on different projects, use live chats, access virtual labs, and complete many other tasks quickly and efficiently. 

Mobile Technology 

Most mobile devices have built-in assistive technology that can help teachers and learners alike. For instance, smart assistance that responds to voice commands can reduce teachers’ workload and improve students’ outcomes. Text-to-speech (TTS) technology reads aloud digital text from emails, websites, etc. Calendar apps can help students remember important dates and tasks. 

Social Networks 

Social networking offers students new ways to research and learn. For instance, a school could use blog software to bring together students with similar interests. For teachers, social media can bring multiple benefits by allowing them to discover new sources of information, expand their own learning, and keep up to date with the latest information and best practices in teaching. Social media can also be used to share online assignments, provide helpful links to additional resources and practice quizzes, post class updates, other edtech platforms, and encourage discussions. 

Enabling Exceptional Edtech

Thanks to educational technology, teachers and students alike have a wide variety of tools at their disposal. But EdTech tools alone aren’t enough to ensure academic success for all students. To make sure that each student is making the most of educational technology, it’s critical to develop new teaching methods that can help change the students’ learning behaviors and their desire for learning.

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