In the 1980s, computer-aided education gained momentum. Back then, the ratio of computers to students in U.S. schools was 1-to-125.
Since then, the EdTech landscape has evolved rapidly. In 2021, we use advanced learning technologies, such as artificial intelligence, extended reality, and the cloud.
They all represent the elements of instructional technology.
Why Is Tech Adoption Vital for Modern Classrooms?
Tech is disrupting leading industries, and education is no exception.
With the rise of technological advancements, students’ approach to learning has changed.
Research studies suggest that only 42% of student work is done using paper and pencil.
The same survey also found that 86% of classrooms have Wi-Fi. Moreover, 73% of teachers say their students use mobile technologies, such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets.
These figures suggest how important tech adoption is in a modern classroom setting.
That is where instructional technologies step in.
What Is Instructional Technology?
Instructional technology includes a vast array of systems and practices, from interactive whiteboards to VR-driven classrooms. It benefits the learning process in multiple ways.
For starters, it keeps lectures interactive and engaging. Lecturers can tailor classes to students’ specific needs and provide more personalized learning experiences.
Most importantly, instructional technologies make education accessible to everyone. With the fast adoption of the cloud, virtual learning has gained prominence. It eliminates geographical boundaries, improves student communication, and provides immediate access to all course materials and updates. Students from all around the world can choose international educational programs that meet their needs.
The Benefits of Instructional Technologies for Education
As mentioned above, instructional technology elevates the learning process on multiple levels. Here are some of them.
The Growth of Online Learning
Since the beginning of the Coronavirus crisis, many educational organizations have shifted from offline to online learning. According to statistics, education-centered cloud computing will have reached $25 billion by the end of 2021.
With the rise of cloud technologies in education, learners are not restricted to traditional textbooks and course materials. Whether they want to learn sports or graphic design, they have access to a wide range of web-based educational resources.
Most importantly, remote learning benefits formal education. Schools use this opportunity to attract international students. Even renowned universities, such as MIT or Harvard, offer Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). They are available to everyone to enroll and participate. Remote students can communicate with peers and educators via multiple platforms.
Improved Learner Experiences
Today’s learners are more tech-savvy. They expect lecturers to provide highly engaging and personalized user experiences.
That is where video content plays a fundamental role. It is interactive, addictive, and visually appealing. It grabs users’ attention, delivers value to them, and keeps them engaged.
There are many learning management systems (LMS), such as Canvas, that enable adaptive learning. They simplify the communication between teachers and students by documenting and tracking student activities.
There are many cloud-based software solutions teachers can use to give and receive student assessments in real-time.
These tech solutions help teachers stay updated with all records, such as the number of learning assignments given or how much time learners needed to solve a problem.
With the right tools, teachers can get real-time insights into student knowledge and performance. They know how much time students take to answer specific question types. That helps them optimize assessments and make sure they meet learners’ needs.
Encouraging Collaborative Learning
Advanced EdTech solutions encourage collaborative learning. With instant messaging apps and file-sharing systems, teachers and students can communicate in real-time. They can share classroom materials instantly and access them from multiple locations and devices.
The use of communication technologies is essential to online learning. The goal is to encourage teamwork and collaboration among virtual learners. Students can work on group projects together, irrespective of their location. That will increase their satisfaction and evoke the feeling of acceptance.
Making the Shift to Active and Experiential Learning
Traditional classroom environments are passive. Learners spend most of their time listening to teachers and taking down notes. They do not participate actively. Advanced instructional technology provides students with a sense of control over lectures. They feel encouraged to interact and are more engaged.
Most importantly, students can gain more real-life knowledge while staying safe. That is where VR and AR tools step in. One such example, Google Expeditions that helps students to take immersive virtual journeys. Students can leverage 360-degree photos by pairing VR headsets with their mobile and desktop devices.
Over to You
Instructional technology benefits both educators and students.
It is highly user-oriented. As such, it provides more personalized, engaging, and interactive learning experiences.
Teachers gain better insights into student performance and can use advanced technologies to improve student performance.
How do you use instructional technology to improve the learning process? Share your thoughts with us!
Eve Anderson is a marketing specialist turned blogger. Interested in sports and exciting travel destinations. Love to share content that can inform people.