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May 14, 2021

The role of technology in the education of the future

Technology already plays a major part in education and it’s likely to become even more integral to the process in the future as education continues to become more multimedia heavy.

This article will look at how this role is likely to shift, based on the up-and-coming technologies we are already seeing today.

Interactive Video

Content that changes according to viewer behaviour is one technology that could well find its way into the classrooms of the future.

We’re already seeing these sorts of videos in entertainment. In 2018, Netflix created an episode of the popular TV show Black Mirror called Bandersnatch in which viewers chose the actions of the protagonist at certain points of the story; this approach to video but with an educational bent is likely to appear in classrooms soon, giving learners the option to not only direct the lesson, but learn from differing outcomes.

Research has shown that engaging, interactive video helps to increase satisfaction, boost achievements, foster collaboration, and even enhance professional development.

Artificial Intelligence Enhancements

Teaching is a job that takes a lot of time, commitment, knowledge, and intelligence. Human teachers know this all very well and spend a lot of time on tasks like marking tests and going over homework in order to grade them.

As Artificial Intelligence becomes even more artificially intelligent, it could step in to help teachers with these tasks, freeing up their time for other things while still fairly assessing learners’ capabilities.

Differentiated learning could also be a practical reality in the future, as AI steps in to help teachers develop intelligent new ways to reach students at their current level of understanding. This means teachers and institutions could use AI to develop personalised courses for students that match their exact capabilities in the moment.

AI could also be used to make learning more accessible. An automatic digital translator could make classes taught in one language available to people who speak other languages, for example, translate live lectures in real time for foreign viewers on the other side of the world.

Flipping the traditional teaching model

In the traditional teaching model, instruction is centred more around the teacher than the learners.

In a tech-driven model, this is completely flipped around – classrooms become places of discussion and exploration rather than where new content is presented.

And when learners are out of class, they learn through video instruction instead of spending their time doing homework.

This is a win for both learners and teachers:

  • Learners are more engaged during the teaching process and therefore absorb more information;
  • The learning process is collaborative rather than done in isolation, and;
  • Teachers function more as guides to discovery than dictators of Things That Must Be Memorised

Chatbots

A chatbot is a piece of software that mimics human conversation to a semi-realistic degree. Nobody expects 1:1 human capability, but chatbots are advanced enough that they can function quite effectively within specific parameters and environments, especially in situations where they can leverage decision trees to provide answers like inside the education space.

In education, chatbots are able to handle queries from learners and offer accurate responses. Studies have shown that learners that receive immediate feedback are more likely to learn better, and since teachers aren’t always available, chatbots provide an excellent – if artificial – alternative for learners that just need some sort of feedback in the now.

Virtual and Augmented Reality

With VR and AR solutions and headsets in active development today, and some schools today already incorporating them into lessons, classrooms of the future are going to be able to offer learners almost-real experiences of times and places that will be used to foster a deeper understanding of our world.

VR headsets continue to improve their image resolution and sound technologies, with the promise of truly immersing the viewer in virtual but real-feeling environments in the not-too-distant future. Augmented reality is not far behind, with headsets like Microsoft’s HoloLens promising to overlay digital elements on top of the real world for truly unique learning opportunities.

The future of education is not only interactive, it’s immersive as well.  

Building the future

Learning institutions of the future are going to be absolutely fascinating. Building on the technologies we already have today, learners of the future are going to have every opportunity available to them to develop their thinking skills in new ways and learn incredibly advanced skills that will ultimately be used to build the societies of the future.

At Boxfusion, we pride ourselves on keeping abreast with all of the latest technology developments and have the opportunity to work with these technologies and others as we continue to develop digital solutions for the South African government, and the betterment of South Africa as a whole.