IAO Whitepaper - Technology transforming Education


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This IAO whitepaper explores how technology is simplifying the delivery and ongoing management of a simple, powerful and highly vulnerable educational environment — allowing faculty, students and management to do more with lesser cost and much ease .

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IAO Whitepaper - Technology transforming Education

  2. 2. Table of Contents 1 Executive Summary 2 Educational Technology- What it is? The Evolution of Educational Technology 3 Impact of Technology on Education 4 Importance of Technology in the Education Industry 5 Impact of Educational Technology on Students Postive Effects Negative Effects 7 Impact of Educational Technology on Educators Postive Effects Negative Effects 9 Implementation of Educational Technology 10 Conclusion 11 About IAO
  3. 3. Executive Summary The use of technology in the education industry has never been greater than in today’s digital age. Since the explosion of the Internet in the 1990s, technology has had an ever increasing impact on the classroom environment. Various different types of technology are being used to support and enhance learning. Some examples include laptops, hand-held computers, smartphones, audio and visual content. Due to the universal nature of technological developments, students from all over the world are growing up in a digital age where they have constant exposure to a variety of media that is impacting the way they interact and use information. Although technology symbolizes advancement in human knowledge, it is seen as a setback by many educators. They argue that the student teacher- dynamic has drastically changed where the role of the teacher has greatly diminished due to the increased use of technology in classrooms. Moreover, technology if not implemented properly can have a negative impact on the overall student learning experience. Through this paper, we are going to explore the major issues relating to the use of technology in education and also aim to provide a framework to incorporate educational technology in the most effective and efficient manner. 1 Executive Summary
  4. 4. Educational Technology-What it is? Educational technology is the study and practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by the creation, usage and management of appropriate technological processes and applications. The implementation of technology in education is associated with both students and educators. The Evolution of Educational Technology Educational technology is an umbrella term for all the technological creations and innovations that have impacted the education industry. Earlier, the concept of educational technology was used as a synonym for audio-visual aids like pictures, charts and models meant for direct teaching-learning. With the advent of the electronic revolution, there came an era of hardware and software like projectors, tape recorders and televisions which were used for teaching purposes along with the conventional methods. After the electronic revolution came the age of mass media which led to a massive communication revolution for instructional purposes with the advent of programmed instruction and programmed learning. A new dimension of educational technology came into existence which has individualized the process of education and introduced a system of self-learning in the form of self- instructional material and online teaching without any need for direct student-teacher interaction. Educational technology is seen both as a means and a service to produce and facilitate better and more productive learning systems. It may be defined as a separate field in the theory of education dealing with the development and application of the use of educational resources. Educational technology should not be confused with either teaching or learning; it should be taken as a sum total of all such aspects which go a long way towards shaping the personality of the learner in a meaningful way. 2 Educational Technology- What it is?
  5. 5. Impact of Technology on Education The advances in technology in the past decade have had a significant impact on education-changing the entire educational landscape for now and for years to come. Although traditional forms of teaching are still prevalent, they are gradually being replaced by newer teaching methods such as video conferencing, online classes and blogs for discussions. Technology has revolutionized the way students learn and the way that teachers teach. Since technology is ever evolving, its’ overall impact on education cannot be measured by quantifiable means. However, there are three major ways that technology has changed the educational landscape: 1. Global outreach and access to unlimited resources With internet, students are able to access unlimited amounts of information. Gone are the days when students would need to consult an encyclopedia for informational purposes. In today’s digital age they can find answers with a few clicks of a mouse or swipes on a screen. It also gives teachers a greater depth and wealth of information from which to teach. Moreover, students and teachers can use the internet to Interact with other educators from all over the world. 2. No physical boundaries Physical boundaries that used to govern schools and education in the conventional educational system have been erased by advances in educational technology. Students can download assignments from websites, listen to lectures on podcasts and communicate with their teachers through social media. The need for a physical classroom is no longer needed as the students are able to interact remotely with their teachers. In addition, teachers are also able to provide instruction to hundreds of students as they are no longer limited by the physical capacity of the conventional classroom setting. 3. Impact of Social Media The advent of social media has revolutionized the means of communication where students are able to interact with other students and teachers at the click of a mouse or a tap on their smart phones. This increased interactivity has resulted in better and faster forms of communication allowing for an easy exchange of ideas or information worldwide. 3 Impact of Technology on Education
  6. 6. Importance of Technology in the Education Industry The incorporation of technology has had a major impact on the education industry. There are numerous benefits of educational technology when it is integrated purposely and comprehensively into teaching and learning. Various research and studies have been carried out to define and ascertain the benefits derived from using technology. The most recurring themes are highlighted below: Technology increases access to education through virtual communities globally Underprivileged students living in disadvantaged communities get access to education through the Internet. Virtual educational communities allow students from all over the world to interact and share their ideas, thereby enhancing the overall educational experience. Technology supports student achievement and helps prevent dropouts Appropriate integration of technology into the educational system has had a significant positive effect on student achievement in all fields of instruction. Studies have shown that proper implementation of technol- ogy has also drastically reduced the dropout rates of students at all levels of schooling. Technology engages students in learning and content creation Technology provides an interactive platform for students to engage with other students and professionals from all over the world by creating and publishing material online. The availability of a worldwide audience enhances the overall learning of the students in the global environment. Technology strengthens career and technical education Through proper implementation of technology, educators get an opportunity to equip students with new skills and knowledge that will allow them to succeed in high growth emerging industries. Technology fosters inclusion and facilitates specialized instruction Technology fosters an environment in which all students are able to engage regardless of disability, background or learning style. Along with that, technology helps teachers to provide personalized and just-in-time instruction for all students which are especially helpful for students with special needs. 4 Importance of Technology in the Education Industry
  7. 7. Impact of Educational Technology on Students Educational technology has become commonplace in classrooms all around the world. Various research studies have been carried out to determine the impact that educational technology has had on student achievement. Due to the fast-paced nature of techno- logical developments, it is hard to assess the impact of technology on the overall student achievement and effectiveness. However, there are both positive and negative effects of educational technology on student achievement. Positive Effects Research If a schools library is outdated or lacking in a selection of titles, a student might find it difficult to compile the necessary research for an essay or research paper. As long as the school has a computer lab, students are able to use the Internet and digital encyclopedias to obtain the research they need. While students should be wary of the legitimacy of some of the content they read online, many schools use software like the Encyclopedia Britannica to help students do research. Globalization When schools in different parts of the state, country or world connect, students can "meet" their counterparts through video conferencing without leaving the classroom. Some sites, such as Glovico, are used to help students learn foreign languages online by pairing a group of students with a teacher from another country. Educational Games In younger grades, teachers expose children to computers through educational games. Instead of playing board games that focus on education, students can learn the basics of spelling, counting and other early educational lessons through computer games that make learning fun. Because many schools have at least one computer in each classroom, the teacher can make that computer a vital part of learning for young students. Distance Education In the past, students could take distance or continuing education classes, also called "correspondence courses," at community colleges and universities. After enrolling in a course of this style, a student would receive course documents in the mail and would be required to mail assignments to his teacher at the educational institution. The process could be long and complicated. Thanks to technology, continuing education students can take courses over the Internet at their convenience. 5 Impact of Educational Technology on Students
  8. 8. Impact of Educational Technology on Students Web Seminars Not every school has the resources and budget to send its students on field trips related to the course of study. When this is the case, the students education can suffer. But thanks to technology, students can use the Internet to virtually attend Web seminars put on by museums and other educational institutions. NASA, for instance, offers a program that allows students to talk to astronauts in space. Negative Effects Lack of Curiosity and Investigation With information and answers readily available online, students are less likely to use deductive reasoning skills or draw their own conclusions. This can cripple the learning process and leave students entirely dependent on technology. The Social Media Effect Although social media has revolutionized communication by making it faster and more interactive, experts argue that it is detrimental to learning proper speech, grammar and spelling. Technology Overload Although technology does facilitate students in pursuing their educational goals, it needs to be used in moderation. Technology can easily be overused within the classroom, and this can cause negative effects on the entire learning experience. Some of these effects are already seen from student texting and internet usage during class. There are also increased incidences of plagiarism for assign- ments and an overall lack of respect for correct language usage within essays. Changing Learning Priorities Technology has changed the way students look at information. The students prioritize where the information can be found rather than what the information actually is. More- over, there is constant stimulation that comes from the Internet and other technological tools that have taken away the ability of students to generally focus in the classroom. This stimulation causes a short atten- tion span and many students struggle to resist impulsive behavior or manage time wisely. 6 Impact of Educational Technology on Students
  9. 9. Impact of Educational Technology on Educators With the growing availability of high speed bandwidth, the advent of Web 2.0, and other technology improve- ments, the education technology landscape in recent years is markedly different when compared with a few years ago. This has had an impact on students and educators alike. Similar to students, educators have also had both positive and negative effects of incorporating technology into their classroom environment. Positive Effects Greater Outreach With educational technology, a teacher is not limited by the number of chairs in his/her classroom. Using the Internet and tools like web seminars and podcasts, one teacher can teach hundreds of students across the world, all at the same time. Enhanced Interactivity Using the tools of social media and internet, there is a higher degree of interac- tion between students and teachers. This increased level of interactivity allows for a greater and faster exchange of ideas and information. Moreover, teachers are able to disperse information using a single channel to an unlimited number of students thereby making communication more effective and efficient. Webinars Webinars and Podcasts allow educators to interact with other educators from all over the world for meeting and training purposes. This allows multiple numbers of educators to collaborate at the same time from all over the world at almost no cost. Moreover, issues dealing with travel arrangements and time settings are taken care of using technology making the overall process efficient and cost-effective Innovation The implementation of technology in education stimulates teachers to present more complex tasks and material. Technology also tends to support teachers in becoming coachers rather than mere dispensers of knowledge thereby promoting innovation and creation of new ideas. Lower Costs With the advent of online instruction, the overall cost of education has decreased quite drastically. The ability of technology to reach a large number of students over the internet without the need for physical presence allows for educators to cut down their costs and instead use the excess money to improve the technological infrastructure. 7 Impact of Educational Technology on Educators
  10. 10. Impact of Educational Technology on Students Negative effects Adaptability The technological innovation is new in the education industry. Many professionals and educators in the industry have showed varied levels of hesitancy in adopting the newer technological tools. Research has shown that quite a large percentage of educators are against the increased use of technology in favor of the conventional old methods arguing that the diminished level of interaction between students and teachers is harmful for the overall learning experience. Lack of interaction between students and teachers Technological innovation in the educational world has greatly reduced the level of interaction between students and teachers. Proponents of conventional education argue that the personal interaction between students and teachers formed the basis of effective and useful learning. They also argue that despite the ability to reach millions of students through the internet, the true purpose and scope of education is nullified by this perceived lack of communication. Training and development The rate of technological innovation is unprecedented. This creates a challenge for educators as they have to constantly keep up with all the new changes. Thus regular training is required which might be a problem for some educators, especially those who are reluctant to use technology in the first place. 8 Impact of Educational Technology on Educators
  11. 11. Implementation of Educational Technology The goal of implementing technology in the classroom is to make education more effective and to offer students new resources and options. Technology implementation also should have an impact on the teaching strategies and methodologies of the teacher. For effective and efficient implementation of technol- ogy, it is important to follow a set of guidelines: Develop a plan Teachers need to develop a clear plan that details all the component elements. The plan should specifically target the ways in which the technology will be applied. For instance, technology may be used in assessment and grading programs, it may be used to enable students to present information in a variety of ways, and it may be used for research or it may be for creating simulations. Prepare teachers Effective deployment of educational technology requires professional development for teachers. They must have full understanding of functions of hardware and software. Additionally, teachers need to revise their teaching strategies in order to have an impact on student learning most effectively. Research Hardware: Before the deployment of hardware, it is important to conduct an in-depth research of the hardware that need to be used. The amount and type of hardware in a classroom will significantly affect the use and effectiveness of educational technology. Laptops are more suited to some types of learning activities, while desktops are more appropriate for others. Peripheral devices such as Smart Boards, camcorders, digital cameras and audio recording devices will enhance educational technology use. Evaluate Software For effective implementation of technology, it is equally important to evaluate and assess various types of software before making the final purchase. Software purchases should be driven by the curriculum, not the other way around. Appropriate software for teachers and students will support the development and implementation of the school curriculum and learning goals. Software should be a tool rather than an end in itself. Organize Management Activities Technology requires management. This includes the physical placement of computers in the classroom and school. For example, mini-labs of desktop computers allow classroom teachers to integrate technology easily into their everyday practices. A one-to-one laptop program provides mobility and allows the teacher to extend lessons outside the physical boundaries of the classroom. Wi-Fi complements this type of laptop program. Teachers will require professional development activities that must be allocated according to need and time constraints. An acceptable use policy should be developed for the entire school community. 9 Implementation of Educational Technology
  12. 12. Conclusion Education lies at a peculiar crossroad in society. On one hand it has the responsibility of anticipating real-life skills by preparing us for an increasingly complex world – but education methodologies can only be formal- ized after practices have been defined. This dichotomy is particularly aggravated when it comes to technol- ogy, where fast-paced innovation and perpetual change is the only constant. Ergo, the innovations in educa- tional technology should be welcomed and incorporated in a way where the overall learning experience is enhanced for both students and educators. 10 Conclusion
  13. 13. About IAO Accreditation and educational quality assurance are essential factors that complete the educational ecosystem. While regional accreditation bodies have dutifully evaluated education providers on a regional scale; a body to recognize and accredit education providers on an international scale was needed in the wake of growing globalization. With more students studying at Educational Institutions or working for companies outside their home country, it was imperative to create standards that are both regionally and internationally recognized and accepted. To accomplish the challenge, IAO created a unique Points Profile System by organizing the best global practices in education in one place. IAO gathered educational quality assurance standards from around in world in collaboration with various regional accreditation bodies and created evaluation criteria, that works as a general basis of evaluation for any education provider, regardless of its regional location. The core focus of the Points Profile System is to work as an additional international accreditation for education providers that will supplement their regional accreditation. The Points Profile System is a dynamic and evolving system that is continually updated in order to cater new developments in the academic world. In relation to this, IAO is also working upon a Points Profile System for students on an individual level that will increase individual acceptability and recognition of students in both educational sector and the employer market. IAO owes its success to its strong network and team of accreditation professionals spread in over 25 countries around the world. IAO has also collaborated with regional accreditation bodies to supplement their strict accreditation methods with its expertise of standardizing the educational environment interna- tionally. IAO’s expertise and services are also recognized by different global accreditation associations. 11 About IAO
  14. 14. AL ACCR ON E TI D A I TAINTERN TION O N RG A N I Z AT I O Contact IAO Contact Office: IAO, 10685-B Hazelhurst Dr. #11524 Houston, TX 77043, USA Phone: 1-866-2768-IAO (426) Email: contact@iao.org Website: http://iao.org