There aren’t that many fields that have been as profoundly transformed by technology as education. We went from notebooks, to shared personal computers, to every student needing a laptop in what seems like a flash. Librarians now need to have a solid IT background, and interactive whiteboards have pushed chalkboards to the side.
Online colleges and classes went from being viewed as lesser, to major universities all scrambling to provide online offerings. Technology evolves exponentially, and it can be hard to know where it will lead when it comes to education. But we can start forming an idea based on current trends. Let’s take a look at what the school of the future will look like and what technology could mean for the future of education.
Online Learning Becoming the Norm
We can expect all universities to at least feature an online component to all their programmes in the future; that’s if they haven’t fully moved to an online format by then. Not only that, but teachers that have received their education online will also be held in higher regard.
Even today, institutions like the University of Exeter offer a complete accredited masters education online, which prepares future educators to this new reality. Not only does this course give students an insight into the new methodologies and tools that will reshape the future of education, but getting their education online also gives them first-hand experience with the medium. These educators will be better placed to make recommendations on online programs, and adapt them to a new generation of students as well.
Remote working has already made flexible schedules easier to implement for businesses, and we can start seeing applications in the world of education. Australia’s “school of the air” is a perfect example. The initiative was started to help students living in remote areas attend school. Students can access study materials on a flexible schedule, either online or through the mail.
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Robotics into the Classroom
The idea seems far-fetched now, but we could see a future where robots either partially or completely replace teachers in some areas. While there will probably still be a need for teachers in the near future, we cannot ignore the possibilities of AI and machine learning and where they could be a few years from now. Robots can access and process vast amounts of information, and AI could be used to answer questions or provide personalised tutoring.
VR as a Tool
Virtual and enhanced reality could also become mainstream in the classroom, and the possibilities are endless. VR could replace actual dissections in biology classes. It could be used to teach advanced geometry and mathematical principles. More importantly, it could provide a more interactive and engaging education model for students who may be more visually inclined or struggle with the current format.
The school of the future will definitely be much different than it is now, and some of these changes could come much sooner than later. However, the future does seem promising, and these tools could completely change the way we see education, and hopefully make it more accessible to all.