Technology and the future of online education – challenges
The year 2016 is full in motion, and, as advancements in technology determine continuous changes, it’s difficult to anticipate what the future holds for the education sector. Nonetheless, a range of experts in this ever-changing field has dared to make a few predictions, concerning what can one expect in the light of learning, and what challenges we are prone to face in the foreseeable future.
Shelly Sanchez Terrell is experienced in training and is also an eLearning specialist based in U.S. She anticipates that a trend that is due to emerge in the future is the increase in students learning about programming, coding, innovating, design, and problem solving. Concurrently, Terrell noted that schools will embrace technology as a learning method, aiming at improving one’s abilities.
She predicts that most viral topics will include 3D printing, virtual reality, coding – mostly online technologic devices. What is the challenge behind this predicament? Firstly, the teachers should assist learners in designing creatively. The focus shouldn’t be directed towards standardizing and grading but on offering the possibility for experimenting and testing ideas that have potential.
- Jennifer Williams – “We’ll see a shift in environment and culture, with learners supported in physical and virtual learning…”
Jennifer Williams, in the position of an experienced program developer, anticipates the establishing of innovative ways of constructing learning environments that encourage creative and ingenious thinking. The shift in the learning environment will determine changes in culture and society. This will bring the education system to a crucial challenge, that of transforming the traditional learning space into an environment that meets the needs of the future student.
- Savas Savides – “To win the student’s attention, educators will soon need to start thinking like game designers.”
According to Savas Savides, a Greek former educator and publisher, the teaching trends in the year 2016 will be similar to those elaborated in gaming. The learner in today’s scenario is a digital native, having a broad range of technological resources.
Consequently, it goes without saying that the students’ attention is slightly diminishing, and the teachers face challenges in maintaining their attention and keeping them motivated. In fact, on this principle, the University in Stanford has already embraced this trend, providing courses in gamification. What is the challenge of this change?
Education administrators have to come up with ways to offer students what they need, regarding online education. Simultaneously, due to the increase of refugees seeking shelter in the European context, we need effective means of integrating these individuals into the society, while considering their ethnic and religious background.
- Barbara Geyer-Hayden – “Mobile learning is a key trend, which means it’s important that e-learning is mobile supported.”
According to Barbara Geyer-Hayden, an MA program director based in Germany, mobile learning plays a significant role in the future of online education. The smartphone is, by all means, the most common device that students use. Hence, a range of online platforms should be readily available for smartphone use. It’s crystal clear that mobile learning is a growing trend. Hence, online content created for student use should be tested for smartphone utilization.