Traditionally behind the curve when it comes to emerging technologies, the education sector is finally beginning to harness their potential. As a result, classrooms are undergoing their biggest makeover in decades, and students are benefitting from a newly immersive experience. As 2019 looms, what are the top trends likely to impact learning in the new year – and beyond?
Collaboration is key
Just as children use technology to connect, share and socialise at home, there are a whole host of tools to help bring them together at school too. Whether through SMART boards or shared spaces like Google Classroom, today’s students are learning how to use the latest software, and how to work more collaboratively with each other.
A new digital world
As well as becoming more collaborative, lessons are now more immersive than ever before. With the latest virtual and augmented reality software, students can be transported to far-flung destinations, travel back in time or connect with peers around the world.
Meanwhile, increased ‘gamification’ – where schools harness gaming tools to bring lessons to life – is making learning more exciting, boosting motivation and instilling valuable new skills at the same time. As Drexel University’s Senior Vice President of Online Learning, Susan Aldridge, explains: “These virtual game worlds provide a unique opportunity to apply new knowledge and make mission-critical decisions, while identifying obstacles, considering multiple perspectives and rehearsing various responses.”
The personal touch
Thanks to advances in machine learning, schools are beginning to offer a more personalised experience. Students can move through material at their own pace, with adaptive learning technologies collecting information about the way they work, and tailoring sessions to suit. With data collected and analysed in real time, lessons are becoming more responsive to the individual needs of each student.
Getting ahead of the curve
While the sector has already begun to adopt and leverage emerging technologies to great effect, it will need to work hard to keep up with the pace of digital transformation. And offering the seamless experience today’s students expect comes at a cost.
From increasing their bandwidth capacity to putting in place robust security measures, schools will need to invest heavily in their IT infrastructure. However, by harnessing scalable, cloud-based applications and collaborative platforms, they will not only reduce their overheads in the long run, but will offer a truly engaging educational experience that meets the expectations of tomorrow’s students, as well as today’s.
At Figtree, we draw on a wide range of the latest technologies to bring our lessons to life. Head over to our blog to find out more, or hear from our partners at TutorCruncher in this month’s interview.