A 2018 survey of faculty attitudes showed conflicted views on the use of technology in classrooms. Educators who have taught online shared a common impression that the experience improved their teaching approach. However, only 30% of professors agreed that online courses offer comparable outcomes to those of traditional on-campus courses. The role of technology in the educational process is more real than ever. Various tools became an inevitable aspect of the way students learn. Online courses are not the only implementation of educational technology. There are several other trends that drive the industry forward. Let’s discuss the most popular ones. 10 Important Ed Tech Trends for 2020 1. Cybersecurity Will Become an Important Issue Since the Wi-Fi network is shared by students and staff, it has to be as safe as possible. Some of the threats include massive malware attacks and deepfake videos. Deepfakes are videos that appear realistic, but are fabricated. IT departments must protect students from exposing themselves to such resources, especially if we’re talking about K-12 schools. 2. VR Is Still a Big Deal This trend is persisting well into 2020. VR headsets offer an immersive experience. They transport the students into a realistic world, which helps them explore nature, the universe, and various scientific concepts. We still have a long way to go before we can see an entire classroom of students with VR sets, exploring the life and surroundings of dinosaurs. But we’re getting there. 3. Blended Learning Will Increase the Effectiveness of Classrooms The process of learning is no longer limited to the classroom. Thanks to online learning materials, podcasts and digital textbooks, the students can cover the lecture at home. Then, the teachers will act as tutors during class time. They will clarify all issues, explain how the students can write good homework, and encourage creative discussions. 4. Essay Writing Services Are on the Rise The trends in assigning academic papers are not going anywhere. Professors are relying on project-based learning more than ever. This brings students to dissertation services. It’s easy for them to find a website, order the entire paper, and wait for a professional writer to complete it. They can get an essay, research paper, dissertation, or any other type of homework they need. We’ll be seeing more of this trend in 2020. 5. Podcasting Is on the Rise The 2019 Digital News Report by Reuters showed that 59% of young people between 18 and 24 years old listen to podcasts on a monthly basis. This leads us to a realistic assumption that college and university professors will follow the trend. If they start providing more educational podcasts related to the subjects they teach, they will improve the engagement in class.. 6. Recorded Lectures Will Become More Accessible Let’s face it: an average student cannot remember everything they hear in class. It doesn’t matter how focused they are. It would be great for teachers to record their lectures and make them available for the entire class. 7. Automation Will Be a Part of Daily Life at Schools Test should focus on multiple-choice questions, which will be evaluated by an automated program. This will simplify the grading process and save a lot of time for the teacher. However, it will also make the results fair. 8. The Educational Process Will Get More Immersive There’s no need for the teacher to give a boring lecture about Ancient Greece, when they can use VR technology. The students will walk around, exploring a surrounding that realistically represents that period. They can ask Siri or Alexa to define something for them, and they will be inspired to communicate with the teacher as they keep exploring. 9. Homeschooling Is Entering a New Era Homeschooling may not be effective in its standard form. Parents often have a problem establishing the authority that a teacher has. Online classes with professional tutors are filling in the gap. The students can learn from trained professionals. In this way, they are reaping the advantages of both homeschooling and classroom-based education. 10. The Internet of Things Is Entering Education… Big Time! The Internet of Things is automating many industries. The educational system is no exception. This technology can and will be used for student location tracking, student vehicle monitoring, and face detection at the entrance. IoT will also set the heating and lighting based on the presence of people in the room. It’s a very cost-effective way to control the learning environment. Education Is Getting More Effective Technology plays an important role in the future of education. The trends listed above will transform the system without making it lose its original values. Students still go to school with the intention to learn. Nothing will change that. Teachers shouldn’t fear technology, since it doesn’t have to be a source of distraction. By keeping pace with technology trends, schools are educating the next generations of workforce. They use technology to prepare students to face a world driven by technology. VR, podcasts, IoT, immersive education, and improved cybersecurity are only few of the trends that will make education better. Let’s implement them! BIO: Michael Turner loves exploring ed tech trends. He is an avid online learner, and always tries new tools and techniques that make his education more effective. You can follow him on Twitter, where he shares updates on his progress.
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