What is technology in education

The 5 most important trends in education 2020

Society and the world of work continue to evolve and change as technology grows and the Fourth Industrial Revolution begins. This, in turn, has had a huge impact on education and has created a number of growing trends in the world of education. In order for educators to properly engage their students, they need to stay abreast of these recent changes and key factors affecting classroom learning. Understanding these trends can help them create more effective learning environments.

As teachers prepare to implement these latest developments in education, here are the top five trends that you should familiarize yourself with.


1. Technological trends in teaching and learning

The explosion in technology over the past two decades has not left the education sector behind. Computers and the Internet have changed the way students can access not only information but even the classroom itself. In the fall of 2017, there were over 6.5 million students enrolling in distance learning from post-secondary college with a college degree.

The increasing growth of technological possibilities means that today there is a multitude of media and learning support tools to provide students with a high quality education via the Internet.

This trend has a number of advantages and disadvantages for teachers and institutions who want to continue to provide their students with the solid education they need to be successful.

For example, technology may not encourage students to learn soft skills. They may not have the built-in ways to engage with their classmates as they would in traditional classrooms. For example, opportunities to lead group projects will no longer be as organic as they used to be.

The online platform could also force teachers to change their teaching methods. They might find it challenging to change the way they approach lesson plans to ensure students stay engaged even when they can't see the instructor in person.

Fortunately, the advent of the online classroom and technology-enhanced teaching also offers a wealth of opportunities for educators and their institutions. Many teachers immediately notice the greater flexibility they can offer in their learning plan. Platforms may offer students the opportunity to follow lectures later live or in recorded versions. Teachers can appreciate this benefit to students.

The online nature of these courses can also improve the faculty’s ability to provide accommodation for different learning styles. Advanced students can be given additional learning resources and challenges to encourage them to delve deeper into the subject without disrupting the flow of the rest of the class.

Learning management systems can also make it easier for teachers to keep track of their students' progress in the course. They can see how their students are coping with the broadcast and recorded lessons, so they have a more efficient tracking system that allows them to provide more timely tutoring when needed.


2. Soft skills training: an important trend in higher education

According to the Future of Jobs report, critical thinking, problem solving, leadership and creativity are among the most important skills in the workplace. Employers want aspiring professionals who understand how to make tough decisions and demonstrate their leadership skills.

In an effort to prepare students for their future careers, schools must be able to help students nurture and develop these soft skills.

As already discussed, however, the simultaneous trend towards online learning makes this a challenge for many teachers. Educators will need to find a way to balance the time spent on the screen in their class with the importance of encouraging students to work face-to-face to encourage soft skills development.

However, those educational institutions that find quality recipes for encouraging the development of these skills will find that this trend offers them a number of growth opportunities. Your students will be more employable, which will improve their graduates' success rates, creating a critical competitive advantage within higher education.

3. Student trend: decreasing attention spans

As technology has spread, the attention span of students has changed too. A study conducted by Microsoft looked at attention spans between 2000, when the mobile revolution began, and 2015. It found that attention spans decreased by an incredible 4 seconds - from 12 seconds to 8 seconds. This decline is largely due to the nature of the technology and the constant stimulation it provides to users.

The changes in the attention span can also be used as an excellent example of the distinction between the different generations. Millennials, for example, who grew up largely on this technology, have different traits than Generation X and the boomers who grew up before them.

Millennials in particular report that if the content is highly engaging, they have the potential to pay attention for longer periods of time than previous generations. However, if this content doesn't appeal to you, then it will be among the first to block out the speaker.

In order to keep millennials' attention, the content presented to them must have excellent visual representation and dialogue, and an interesting plot. This younger group cares more than any other age group about the narrative and visual nature of the content that interests them.

This difference in attention can also be seen in the behavior of millennials compared to other age groups. Among young adults, 77 percent say they pick up the phone when they have nothing else to keep their attention. However, only 10 percent of those over 65 report the same.

This shift in attentional tendencies also has a huge impact on how instructors adapt their teaching and how they engage students with the subject matter. Teachers need to find ways to organize lessons to attract the attention of their students, many of whom will be of this millennium generation, and adapt the method and pace of teaching. Your course design should not forget the importance of strong narration and visual design.

Don't forget, however, that when students have material in front of them that is highly visual and engaging, they have excellent potential to be attentive. These modern students want to be challenged and they value interaction. Teachers who learn how to get in touch with these students benefit from the opportunities this creates for teaching.


4. Encouraging learning versus teaching

As technology has grown in importance, so has the relationship between teachers and students. With a wealth of information, students today have the tools they need to discover a vast amount of facts and knowledge on their own. In this environment, many students value a top-down teaching method less and less. Instead, teachers now have a more supportive role. Their role has slowly evolved into a position of helping students understand how to learn, how to love learning, and how to discover and understand the information they find.

This can present some challenges for teachers who need to work on their own soft skills of leadership and problem solving. You need to learn how to encourage conversation and create an environment that values ​​teamwork.

The best teachers will be those who can help students take responsibility for their learning.

As teachers become more involved in the student learning process, they will also be able to get immediate feedback on the effectiveness of their teaching. Their willingness to nurture and support these skills in their classroom will quickly become apparent as the class works their way through the material.

Teachers who want to focus more on student development than just imparting knowledge will find this new model very rewarding.


5. Trend towards lifelong learning

Every industrial revolution has amazingly changed the nature of work and jobs. The current 4th Industrial Revolution can affect a staggering 50 percent of jobs as tremendous technological advances are changing the way people do their jobs. Professionals who want to remain competitive in their environment will have to constantly re-qualify. They cannot assume that any education they have acquired in the first half of their careers will be all they need for the rest of their working lives.

Instead, graduation must be followed by continuous learning. This requires the institutions to create a mentality of self-development in their students as well as in their teachers and staff. Classrooms must provide opportunities for self-learning skills so that students can continue to learn and engage in the areas they have chosen.

However, the schools that learn to master these skills have the chance to stay connected with their graduates throughout their careers. They can offer continuous learning courses that keep their former students connected with new developments in their fields and ensure they keep coming back to school for the support and training they need.

This offers schools growth opportunities as they create new programs and adult education opportunities to help their alumni stay successful in the changing professional environment.

As technology changes society, it also has a dramatic impact on how people earn and prepare for careers. The institutions that learn how to keep up with these changes will position themselves to be growth and success oriented.