Aloysius D’Mello, Principal of Greenwood High International School, Bangalore, writes on the role of technology and how it has transformed the way education is being imparted in India….
Popular human rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. had once said, “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of education.”
Times have changed and technology has influenced everything we do, including the education system. However, the basic foundation of education has not changed. As Martin Luther King Jr had said, the goal of education will always be to teach the future generation to think intensively. Nonetheless, the education system will certainly take a different path, which will incorporate technology at every juncture.
Technology will not only make it easier to reach out to a vast diversity of students but will enable teachers and educators to personalise education. The differences in learning abilities and competencies will not affect the pace of a class since technology can help cater to multiple abilities and competencies in a given timeframe. Adaptive learning platforms will enable teachers to engage students and interact with them and give them feedback, making distant learning more personalized. Technology will also enable students to learn on the go, and will probably be served in smaller units so that it can be consumed in an easier manner. Edutainment will also become more mainstream as parents and students will demand education to be less didactic and more ‘fun’. Gaming will become a part of learning, as it teaches surviving in a competitive environment.
Student strengths and competencies will form the basis of formative assessments, and differentiation can be done focusing on the student’s innate abilities and capabilities. Both teachers and students will be able to access better learning tools. Educators and facilitators will better appreciate project-based learning, and the content will become more interactive. Attitudes have changed towards traditional ways of teaching, and hence, a more dynamic way of teaching will develop, where technology will not replace educators and teachers, but complement their teaching methods.
An immersive learning process will be possible as new technologies are developed and adopted, and learning will not stop at the ring of a bell. Literacy will not be the goal; the goal will be the ability to develop critical thinking skills. New content will arise, and old content will be made more robust. The International Baccalaureate program, which has always focused on holistic development, will further evolve to incorporate technology, distance learning, multiple intelligences and competencies, and the other growing needs of a constantly changing world.
On the whole, education in the future will still be an essential way to help children acquire critical thinking skills. Technology will play a significant role in helping educators, not replacing them. Distance learning will be a norm and project work, internships and experiential learning will become more prevalent as both students and their families become more aware of differentiated teaching and multiple intelligences. New opportunities will also rise as technology paves a completely new path for the brave new world. But critical thinking skills will remain essential, and education will continue to foster that.
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