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How technology has changed the landscape of education

By Mansi Jain,

The education space, today, is experiencing the power of technology like never before.

New-age technologies have been integrated into the educational landscape over the last decade.

For a very long time, educators have followed a linear pedagogy. As the job market evolved in the last decade and introduced an entirely new demand of tech-based jobs, technology started being slowly integrated into teaching and learning processes in schools. The final push, however, was the COVID-19 pandemic, which made technology not only an asset but a necessity for continued quality education for the youth. The next step is realising that instead of using tech solely as a crisis-management tool, teachers can harness online learning as a powerful educational tool. 

New technologies in education 
There are a plethora of new-age technologies that have been integrated into the landscape of education over the last decade. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Virtual Reality (VR) are the two most prominent among them. Other technologies that may become a part of the education sector in the future include the adoption of 5G technology, 3D printing, augmented reality, and automation. 

Artificial Intelligence: AI enables students to experience a customized learning plan which is suited to their individual needs. It adjusts the speed and iterations as per the student’s understanding. This is possible through adaptive learning programs and software which make tutoring more advanced. AI also helps streamline administrative tasks like grading tests and homework. It can help analyse students’ performances and offer recommendations on how the gaps can be filled as per each student’s shortcomings. As these programs take care of the arduous and time-consuming tasks of grading, this technology allows teachers to use that time more effectively. 

Virtual Reality: VR creates a virtual world that can replicate the immersive experience of real life. Locations that would be impossible or too expensive to visit can be accessed right inside a classroom with this technology. Being able to visualise and feel helps children retain information and knowledge and greatly improves their learning experience, making it more engaging and entertaining. VR, however, still has a long way to go before it can be fully incorporated into education. 

Benefits of technology in education 
Fear of change has always been a barrier in the integration of technology in any sphere including education. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the positive impact of technologies like virtual classrooms:  

  • Virtual classrooms dramatically increase students’ accessibility to classrooms. Quality learning can now be facilitated from even the most remote areas as long as there is access to the internet. 
  • It has dramatically increased collaboration and communication between teachers and students as well as amongst the students. Technology has enabled one-on-one interaction with teachers. It even encourages global collaboration as children get used to online communication and the accessibility to a global community. 
  • Online learning also gives students an opportunity to pursue a personalised learning experience. The 24/7 access to a wide variety of educational material across teaching formats gives students the ability to foster interests in fields that may not necessarily be easily available to them otherwise. Online seminars, MOOCs, degree programs, etc. are accessible to all. 

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