The Most Promising Educational Technologies for 2013-2014

The Most Promising Educational TechnologiesThe face of education is changing. The education model created in the 1800s by top universities around the world are no longer applicable in today’s modern world. The academic world has resisted the changes that technology has brought to the world, but eventually, even the most stubborn universities now acknowledge the advantages of technology in education. This reluctant embrace of technology has lead to the creation of many different technology-based education models. For 2013-2014, the following five programs show the most promise:

Education based through social networks
Social networks can provide a huge array of educational opportunities. With programs like Google+ hangouts, online groups for discussing homework, assignments, and lectures, connections between students, and links to additional study resources through social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, connecting with classmates and teachers is easier than ever. Even business administration courses and workshops can benefit from the use of social media.

Educational apps
Educational apps are simple tools that universities and businesses can use to educate students and employees. Educational apps vary from simple dictionary tools to complete online courses, like a business administration course, second language course, or even a upper-level math course. Educational apps can provide a way for students and teachers to connect on multiple levels and provide a simple way for students to practice their newly acquired skills.

Massive open online courses
A massive open online course (or MOOC) is a new trend in online education. These courses are similar to online college courses, but are typically targeted at continuing education and specialized business courses for specific industry knowledge. These classes are open to anyone who wants to take the course, and often use other online education tools combined with the MOOC course to make it easier for participants to submit projects and interact with fellow students and the course instructor. Many businesses are now turning to MOOC-style workshops and programs rather than hosting weekend courses or traditional in-house short courses. This helps companies save money and makes it easier for more people to attend the course.

Flipped classrooms
A flipped classroom is the complete opposite of a typical lecture-based classroom model. The flipped classroom provides instruction for the class outside of the classroom with a series of online videos. Students watch the videos at home, then in class, the teacher helps the students work on the problems and answers any questions the student has about the video lectures.

Specialized training
One-size-fits-all education no longer applies in many industries. With constant changes in the medical, technology, design, and even education fields, the education learned in college is often not enough to provide a thorough knowledge of any subject. Many companies are creating their own in-house educational programs that help employees learn a specific industry. Specialized classes are a simple solution for under qualified workers and many are based online using the flipped classroom or MOOC instruction method.

As technology continues to change, how children and adults are educated will also continue to change. The five educational technology trends in 2013 may be completely replaced in as little as 5 years. The world is always changing, and if education does not keep up, classroom instruction will become less and less relevant to the outside world.