Top Technology Trends for Education in 2013

Education is certainly no exception to the impact of technology. It has the power to transform education and positively shape how students view the learning process. The use of tools in education isn’t an old idea; teachers have been using whiteboards, projectors and visual aids like posters to relay concepts in their lessons. Some online institutions are challenging the dominance of traditional institutions of learning, creating an intensely competitive market. To attract the new students, technologies play a key role and as trends are changing now and then so it’s the right time to implicate the change.

Some top trends are:

A. Bring your Own Device: 

Many Institutions nowadays go with BYOD as students are more comfortable with their technology computing devices. In this more often is Laptop but now mobile devices are taking charge of this like smart phones and tablets. Mobile Technology makes learning much easier that offer portability, this touch screen device is easy for students to use and come with built in Wi-Fi to access the internet.  It also has the ability to tap into many apps at the same time which make it more interesting and speed in work. Mobile phones traditionally have a bad reputation in colleges but that is starting to change.

Mobile learning is an exciting opportunity in many ways which can be achieved with proper time to explore these gadgets and teachers can use it in the classroom on a regular basis to get use of it.

Example:

In India, where 82 percent of employees are provided with a portable device from their employer, but 77 percent still bring their own device to work to help them complete their tasks. Of this group, 72 percent claimed to be more productive when they worked on the device of their choice, and 70 percent claimed to be happier in their role when they were allowed to use a device of their choice. 66 percent say they feel less stressed when they can choose the IT tools they use.

While it seems like organizations in India are following a generally ad-hoc manner, the very essence of BYOD is in each player having a unique approach. As long as Indian CIOs also remember to finalize end-user contracts with employees who wish to access corporate resources in exchange for some level of control over device, there should be no great mishap.

B. The MOOC trend will carry on:

MOOC stands for “Massive Open Online Courses” represent a recent trend in online education. These MOOCs offer students the ability to gain knowledge from courses taught at some of the world’s top universities. A key focus of the MOOC model is learning through the experiences of others and because of the wide reach and growth of MOOCs, students are exposed to variety of individuals with varying life experiences and residences all over the world.

Some prerecorded lectures are created internally or by the resources is available for the students to access anytime, anywhere and can also learn through discussion.

Example:

Microsoft Research India has rolled out a pilot project with Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) for a MOOC-like experiment blending online education with classroom learning. As part of its Massively Empowered Classroom project, Microsoft Research is offering free online certification on algorithm, design and analysis (ADA) for engineering students.

Two thousand students across 27 engineering colleges have enrolled for the semester-long programme so far. “The recent excitement for MOOC is subtle and obvious. Technology has made students the centre of learning as opposed to constrained by a classroom,” said P Anandan, MD of Microsoft Research India. The course offers video lectures, online quizzes and tests at the end of each topic. Top ten students will get an opportunity to intern at Microsoft Research besides getting a certification from them.

C. 3-D Printing Hits the Road:

This technology allows users to turn any digital file into a three dimensional physical product. It also allows for customization like music and movies; one thing good about this printing technology is that it changes with the dynamic of consumer culture.

This printer also helps in creating paper covered by solar cells, print buildings from dust and to create a human vein. Students of all ages can imagine, design and create with a 3-D printer.

Example:

3D printing in Aerospace

The Gas Turbine Research Establishment (GTRE), Bangalore, India is a government laboratory involved in in R&D of marine and aeronautical versions of gas turbines. The Kaveri jet engine, a flagship product of GTRE, was commissioned for the HAL Tejas aircraft. With over 2,500 Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) components, the Kaveri jet engine prototype is said to be the most complex rapid prototype assembly ever created. The total cost to produce the FDM assembly was about $20,000.

GE is employing 3-D printing to build fuel injector nozzle for its jet engines. Each nozzle is printed as a single piece using laser sintering (a process based on atomic diffusion) on cobalt chromium. The new nozzle is faster to make, five times more durable and lighter. The company plans to make 100,000 of its engine parts using 3D printing by 2020.

NASA has used 3D printed parts in its next NASA Mars Rovers. About 70 of the parts that make up the rover were built using 3D Printers through a process called FDM Technology or additive manufacturing.

D. Game-based learning will gain popularity:

This type of learning is becoming increasingly popular inside classroom as teachers become more and more familiar with the process and its many benefits. GBL can be anything from learning simulations, serious games and also can be using of video games in the classroom. GBL is designed to balance game play with subject matter and help students retain and apply what they have learned in the real life.

These GBL are challenging, interesting and also it will engage the students with the ever enhancing technology landscape.

Example:

The Incredible Manager is a simulation game designed to train software project managers, designed and implemented by the Software Reuse Team (Software Reuse Team Homepage, 2008). The player must assume the role of a software project manager and develop software projects within budget, schedule and quality demands. The game consists of three components: the simulation model, the scenario model and the machine. The simulation model represents the world and aspects that will be presented to the player. It contains scenario models providing a generic library of theories and events that can be integrated into a project model by an instructor. The simulation machine controls the steps in the simulation and evaluates the behavior of system elements based on calculated model equations. The game machine is the component that the player interacts with which runs game phases continuously. Each phase is divided into five steps: The begin phase introducing the project, scenarios that may impact development and project characteristics such as budget. The project planning phases require the player to allocate staff to tasks, decide on the effort required on tasks and effort required on quality assurance activities. The player can modify the project plan at any time. The planning acceptance stage is where the project plan is sent to the stakeholders to be approved. If the project plan is refused then the player must revert back to the project planning phase until it is accepted. The project execution plan is where the project plan is executed in continuous turns consuming project resources. The player has to take corrective action in this phase in response to such things as exhausted developers or altering the original project plan. The end phase occurs when the project resources are done (project failure) or the project is completed successfully. There are three different characters in the game: the manager, the boss and the developers. The manager is the role assumed by the player and is responsible for all of the decision-making processes. The boss is effectively the stakeholders and is responsible for the acceptance or rejection of the project plan. The developers are the team developing the project and have different characteristics and skills such as work hours per day and hourly rate of pay.

As the education pattern is changing in the same way students are growing advance so its important for the culture to grow. So, for the betterment of students, education sector has to change with more new technology so that our country can compete with all others and can challenge the world.

Contributed by Nandita Mishra (Batch 2013, IBS Hyderabad)

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