They say that change is the only constant in life and one of the fields where this claim is confirmed is definitely education. As major developments impact all spheres of our lives, technology and different approaches to the concept of learning continue to shape education at present. Though printed textbooks, libraries and chalkboards are still widely used, there is no denying that smartphones, tablets, ebooks and smart boards are taking the world by storm.
As always, there are those to resist inevitable changes by pointing out the negative aspects of modern progress. Though they may be right about some of the things, we simply can’t neglect all the positive and major changes that have been introduced to the field of education. Here are just some of them that have had the greatest impact.
Development of communication
Instead of being restricted to office hours, students now have an opportunity to get in touch with their teachers by sending a simple email. This not only saves the time necessary for the student in question to go to the teacher’s office and wait, but it also allows the teacher to respond at the moment they find the most convenient. Next, these new channels of communication have proven to be very useful when it comes to sending study materials and tasks and are definitely more practical than copying loads of pages. Finally, a lot that has been said may easily be forgotten or misinterpreted, while a carefully worded email can be referred to at any later stage.
Interactive study material
Interaction is one of the keywords in education nowadays. Traditional textbooks have given way to more user-friendly and easier-to-learn-from videos and websites. With students who need something really catchy to hold their attention, course designers have a challenging task of responding to such requests. Another advantage of interactive study material is that it’s very eco-friendly since heavy textbooks are no longer printed, which means that the amount of paper used in schools is much lower now.
Long gone are the days when passing notes printed or written down on paper was one of the things students had to deal with while studying. Now, thanks to platforms such as the famous Thinkswap, students can post their notes and earn credit, which they can later use for gaining access to someone else’s notes. A simple, yet great idea made possible by technological development. This means that students are able to get hold of more relevant materials for their studies, which should make the process easier and more efficient.
Changes to research
Those who remember spending countless hours in libraries searching for a particular piece of information must regret not being able to use the web. Just compare that to the fact that you can now sit at home and get the information you need with one or a few simple clicks! The process of obtaining information is now much easier and faster, which leaves more time for actual learning and application of the information found. Students now bookmark or copy the texts and websites and can access them from their computer, tablet or smartphone, instead of hauling tons of paper with them.
Extended classroom communities
One more option that students have at their disposal are web-based platforms that can be used to discuss homework, post assignment and interact among themselves and with teachers on any topic relevant to studying. They can also sometimes get help or useful tips from students who have completed the same course and who are willing to share their experience with young colleagues.
Most changes, as you can see, are related to modern technology and gadgets that are no longer that expensive, although they all require certain initial investment. When coupled with teachers who are happy to embrace the new inventions, these novelties and breakthroughs can have a really deep impact not only on the process of education but also on the way the acquired knowledge is applied.