Emerging TechnologiesMEDA 5400Michelle Childress, M.S. Ed.
What is Emerging Technology?Emerging technology can be defined as a media that is coming intoview, coming into existence, or coming to commonality. It can be aninnovative technology that is reshaping the nature of education--either by the delivery process or by the very nature of learningstrategies which are employed by the user.Computer and network based technologies hold great potential forincreasing the access to information as well as a viable and ever-changing means of promoting learning. Schools and classroomshave never before had such universal access to information at such arapid pace.Technologies are transforming classrooms into more engaging,collaborative and productive learning environments in whichinstructions can be customized to student‟s specific needs, interestsand learning styles. Technology is also redefining the way educatorsteach as well as the role they serve – from being the sole source ofinformation to being a guide, facilitator and coach in the learningprocess.
Key Trends in TechnologyExperts engage in an extensive review of current scholarly articles,interviews, papers, and researchto identify and rank trends which arecurrently affecting the practices of teaching and learning as well ascreative inquiry. Once identified, the most pervasive list of trends isranked according to how significant is likely to be for learning-focusedinstitutions over the next five years. The highest ranked trends arethen considered to be the key drivers of educational technologyadoptions for the next five years. • The abundance of resources and relationships made easily accessible via the Internet is increasingly challenging us to revisit our roles as educators. • As IT support becomes more and more decentralized, the technologies we use are increasingly based not on school servers, but in the cloud. • Technology continues to profoundly affect the way we work, collaborate, communicate, and succeed. • People exect to be able to work, learn, and study whenever and wherever they want. • The perceived value of innovation and creativity is increasing.
Key Challenges in TechnologyIn addition to key trends, key challenges are also discussed whenconsidering what may become an emerging technology adoption.Important constraints and challenges are also drawn from an analysisof current events, papers, articles and personal experiences asinstitutions consider adopting a new technology. There is a pervasivesense that individual organizational contraints are the most importantfactor in any decision to adopt a new technology. Common challengesinclude:• Digital media literacy continues its rise in importance as a key skill in every discipline and profession.• Economic pressures and new models of education are presenting unprecedented competition to traditional models of schools.• The demand for personalized learning is not adequately supported by current technology or practices.• A key challenge is the fundamental structure of the K-12 education establishment--aka “the system.”• Many activities related to learning and education take place outside the walls of the classroom and thus are not part of our learning metrics.
What is Emerging Technology?Emerging technology is a highly studied subject and an annualHorizon report is dedicated to what technology is „in‟ and whichtechnology is on a plateau as well as which technology is waning.There are other „offshoots‟ from this report which are also importantto consider. It appears that what is in specifically for K-12 educationand what will be most likely innovative in the future is:1) cloud computing (near-term--within next 12 months)2) mobile technology (near-term--within next 12 months)3) game based learning (second-term adoption--next 2-3 years)4) open content learning (second-term adoption--next 2-3 years)5) learning analytics (far-term adoption--next 4-5 years)6) personal learning networks (far-term adoption--next 4-5 years)
1. Cloud ComputingIn the near term--one year or less--another of theimportant technologies includes cloud computing. Foreducation, the relevance of cloud computing this year(2011-12)--as opposed to last year, when cloudcomputing was focused more heavily on data systems--will be in allowingschools to expand the tools available for learning and teaching in ways thatdesktop software, with its restrictive licensing and often high costs, cannot.Michigan public schools are already saving huge amounts of money which nolonger needs to support software for their basic application programs by usingGoogle Apps for Education.“Schools are increasingly taking advantage of ready-made applications hostedon a dynamic, ever-expanding cloud that enables end users to perform tasksthat have traditionally required site licensing, installation, and maintenance ofindividual software packages.” according to the authors of the Horizon report.“E-mail, word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, collaboration, mediaediting, and more can all be done inside a Web browser, while the softwareand files are housed in the cloud.”
2. Mobile TechnologyMobile technology reappears as a near-term technology as theybecome increasingly popular throughout the world as a primarymeans of accessing Internet resources (e.g. information, socialnetworks, tools for learning and productivity). Resistance to the useof mobiles in the classroom continues to slow their adoption in manyschools, but a growing number of institutions are finding ways to takeadvantage of a technology that nearly all students, faculty, and staffcarry every day. More and more people prefer a mobile device tositting at a monitor to access the Internet or other digital applications.K-12 schools are increasingly seeing the value ofmobiles every day--noting that not only are thedevices less expensive than most laptops, but theyalso need less infrastructure to support them. Wildlabis one example of how students can use iPhones andan app (with GPS technology) to support research onbirds.
3. Game Based LearningGame based learning has grown more rapidly in the past few years asresearch continues to demonstrate its effectiveness for learning withstudents of all ages. Games for educational purposes span the range fromsingle-player to small-group and board games all the way to the massivelypopular multi-player online interface. Alternate reality games have alsobecome very popular in our social culture.Those games and game practices at the front end of the wide spectrum areeasy to integrate with coursework and in many institutions are already anoption. The greatest potential for games in learning experiences lies in theirability to foster collaboration, problem-solving, and procedural thinking. Someof the most productive role of „play‟ is for the purpose of experimentation,experience with different identities, and even for failure, and hopefully,eventual success. This technology is also consider a near-term horizontechnology with fuller implementation about two to three years. Palm BeachHigh School is already involved with a language arts game which is meetingwith much success with their ESL and visually impaired students.
4. Open Content LearningOpen content is also a few years out, largely owingto restrictions on textbook adoption imposed onschools by some states. But the benefits of openmaterials are numerous, including cost savings overtraditional textbooks, agility for tackling new information, convenience whendelivered digitally, interactivity, and potential for collaborative learning.“While universities ultimately paved the way for open content as aninstrumental classroom tool, its recent entrance in the K-12 sector is partlyrooted in the financial benefits," the report said. "For example, launched inSouth Africa, Free High School Science Textbooks serves disadvantagedschools by providing royalty-free, open source books written by volunteerexperts.”Schools are beginning to feel a social responsibility to create and share theircontent. The movement away from the idea of authoritative repositories ofcontent and towards the broader notion of content being both free andubiquitous is becoming more popular. One such example is a K-12 wiki projectbased through Curricki which allow for educators across the world to contributeto K-12 science exercises.
4. Learning AnalyticsLearning analytics is clearly concerned with the power of data mining,interpretation, and modeling new approaches to improve teaching andlearning--tailoring education to individual students more effectively. Though stillin early stages, learning analytics (also being called “academic analytics”)responds to the calls for accountability on school campuses across the countryand provides for a method to evaluate the vast amount of data being producedby students in day-to-dayacademic environment. Analyticswill help educators design systemsand approaches to better measurestudent outcomes and facultydevelopment. New ways ofthinking and new technologies willbe available to track, visualize andmine data. image provided by http://www.learninganalytics.net/
5. Open Content LearningOpen content is also a few years out, largely owingto restrictions on textbook adoption imposed onschools by some states. But the benefits of openmaterials are numerous, including cost savings overtraditional textbooks, agility for tackling new information, convenience whendelivered digitally, interactivity, and potential for collaborative learning.“While universities ultimately paved the way for open content as aninstrumental classroom tool, its recent entrance in the K-12 sector is partlyrooted in the financial benefits," the report said. "For example, launched inSouth Africa, Free High School Science Textbooks serves disadvantagedschools by providing royalty-free, open source books written by volunteerexperts.”Schools are beginning to feel a social responsibility to create and share theircontent. The movement away from the idea of authoritative repositories ofcontent and towards the broader notion of content being both free andubiquitous is becoming more popular. One such example is a K-12 wiki projectbased through Curricki which allow for educators across the world to contributeto K-12 science exercises.
6. Personal Learning NetworksPersonal learning environments are similar to traditional learning managementsystems but focus less on the traditional components of learning (e.g.calendars, assignments, and textbooks) and more on the learning itself and“experiences at an individual level.”“In concept, personal learning environments (PLEs) and widespread adoptionwould encourage students to approach learning in ways best suited to theirindividual needs. Visual learners, for example, might be able to obtain materialfrom a different source than auditory learners. Students using PLEs mayfurther benefit from the practice of keeping track of, and curating, their ownresource collections. Personal learning environments are seen as a way toshift the control over learning--particularly its pace, style, and direction--to thelearner.”The technologies for constructing PLEs are available now;but PLEs are identified as longer-term technologies (fouror five years out) for schools owing to the dearth ofdocumentation and the fact that theyre still fairlyconceptual in nature and lack a solid body of case studies.
Key Emerging Technology SubtopicsCloud Computing Open Content Learning• Google Apps • Neo K-12• Google Documents • Curriki• ArcGIS • CK-12 Flexbooks• LearnBoost • Creative Commons--Education• iCloud (formerly MobileMe) • K-12 EdCom.org• Splashup • Thinkfinity• SlideShare • Wiki Books• Vizzle Learning AnalyticsMobile Technologies • Next Generation Intiative• iPad (PC netbooks) • The School of One• iPhone (Smartphones) • Visualizing Collaborative Knowledge• netbooks (Chrome netbooks) • Early Warning Systems (Course Signals, GPS)• ebook readers (Kindle, Nook, iPad) • Teachscape Walk • Data Mining (Success of Online Tools)Game-based Learning• Wii and Nintendo Personal Learning Networks• Virtual Worlds (Second Life, Whyville, • podcasts and vodcasts ActiveWorlds) • social networks (Twitter, Facebook)• Social Network Games (Scrabulous, Oregon Trail, • wikis (content related; educational) Parking Wars) • blogs (content related; educational)• Online Games (Immune Attack, The Hexagon, • various Web 2.0 apps (Evernote, Glogster, Skype) Challenge, The World of Warcraft (in school), Urgent Evoke, Finding Identity, Ghosts of a • Symbaloo Chance, Quest Atlantis ) • Diigo • NetVibes
Research Paper Assignment1. Please read the Horizon Report for K-12 Emerging Technology report (linked here and attached in D2L).2. Read and review this PowerPoint on Emerging Technologies.3. Select one of the six key emerging technology areas (Cloud Computing, Mobile Technologies, Game-based Learning, Open Content Learning, Learning Analytics, and Personal Learning Networks) to research further. Examine and select one or more of the subtopics on Slide 13 of this PowerPoint for more specific information to add to your report about these technologies.4. Write a three to four page paper, double-spaced, with 1” margins, a title page and a bibliography page at the end. Parenthetical references within the body of the paper is preferred and please use scholarly articles and research from which to base your observations and make your report as you write a summary of your findings in your own words. Include at least one paragraph about how comfortable you are with your new knowledge about the newest trends in education--specifically focusing on the technology area you have chosen. Drop this assignment in the D2L Dropbox on the calendar due date by 10:00 pm.5. Please do not use wikipedia, personal blogs (or other sources which have no apparent expert authoring the materials) or too many direct quotations.6. Review the rubric provided for this assignment.7. Questions? Email or add your questions in the Discussion area on D2L.