Progress brings new technology and new approaches to learning. We have been investigating the big trends in learning and ed-tech so far this year. Here are four major trends we have discovered–
Pew Research tells us that in 2018, 91% of teenagers in the US had access to a smartphone, with half that number using the device ‘almost constantly’. In the UK, that figure is even higher with 95% owning a smartphone. The genie is so far out of the bottle, it has since brought it back to the recycling center and got a refund.
Teenagers now have the tools to learn anywhere. The learning –as always – is up to them. The e-learning industry has been quick to recognize the shift to mobile learning. Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store house a wide range of education applications. GoConqr and other ed-tech groups like Kahn Academy and Edmodo have apps that cover any learning requirement.
As technology permeates every aspect of our lives, there is a counter movement, which looks to more traditional models of learning. Social Learning Theory emphasizes learning through interaction – by observation, imitation and modelling. This is learning that develops the soft skills that are the basis of our social fabric. Following years of declining numbers, organizations such as The Scouts are now seeing increasing memberships as more parents want their children to develop socially.
Spaced learning is a system in which learning is condensed and repeated, with breaks to allow the mind to process the information. For a digital study plan, it may look something like this –
The breaks give the subconscious the chance to background the data. By changing the mode of learning, the learner stays engaged. GoConqr’s Course Builder can be modeled the same way. Here are some examples –
We have seen repeated references to learning in a ‘post-truth’ world. On a daily basis, we can encounter many information sources, and through many channels. The challenge is to separate the trusted sources from the more dubious. Reputations matter and are earned. Students need to be able to distinguish the credible sources from the others. Critical Thinking is an essential skill in learning the difference.
Thanks for reading.