Technology in Education 2019 Inclusion
Event theme 13: Augmented reality
Enlist augmented reality (AR) technology to embellish games and activities. ARtechnology doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. Simple SnapChat customgeofilters are one example of how AR is achievable for all event creators.
Using augmented reality in education and training: The opportunities and
challengesAugmented reality in education can serve a number of purposes. It helps thestudents easily acquire, process, and remember the information. Additionally,AR makes learning itself more engaging and fun.It is also not limited to a single age group or level of education, and can beused equally well in all levels of schooling; from pre-school education up tocollege, or even at work.
How AR in education works
AR is part of a larger Extended Reality (XR) concept, which also includes VRand MR technologies. Augmented reality enhances the real-world environmentwith text, sound effects, graphics, and multimedia. In other words, AR bringsus an enriched version of our immediate surroundings by layering digitalcontent on top of the graphic representation of the real world.The hardware for AR learning may be pretty basic, such as smartphone camerasfor playing a popular PokemonGo game. Yet, the hardware in AR glasses likeGoogle Glass, Dream Glass, and Vizux Blade are arguably more convenient fordelivering AR to consumers.However, the AR content is generated with AR software, which is still mostlydeveloped for a specific AR-hardware vendor and often sold with an AR hardwarekit. Augmented reality in education and training has a wide array of uses andenables its adopters to learn-on-the go using real-time instructions.
AR development in education: Lead the way of innovation or get left behind
As we can see, augmented reality in education has enormous potential, which isstill to be uncovered. With the current adoption of mobile technologies andthe recent advances in hardware, AR is becoming more accessible and broadlyused. Therefore, right now might be a good time to make the first steps inthis direction. Otherwise, you risk missing out on the chance to win yourmarket share.Yet, AR app development is no easy task. It requires a certain skill set aswell as hands-on experience building similar products. We at Eastern Peak havethe expertise and skills to help you build an EdTech solution of any scale andcomplexity, including AR or VR content.
Technology in Education 2019: Augmented reality
Photograph: Knight Center for Journalism, CC BY 2.0Let’s start with the most sci-fi prediction of all: augmented reality (AR).What should we look forward to in education technology for this much-hyped andbuzzworthy technology that always appears to be on the point of breakingthrough?Last year, the startup Magic Leap released a prototype of their mass-market ARglasses, which was received warmly if not enthusiastically.3 According to AdiRobertson of Vox, augmented reality is established in industrial and medicinecontexts, but has yet to really hit wider mainstream appeal—in fact, many ARhardware companies are scaling down their plans for 2019.Students in a learning environment for medicine and manufacturing-focusedskill sets can expect to see AR being increasingly used in context fortraining, as a learning technology. Some examples of this are AR in use insurgery planning and practice, as described by the Harvard Business Review4,and Lampix, an interactive and collaborative tool that changes any flatsurface into a multimedia whiteboard that can visualize data and workflowprocesses.5However, in other fields AR is an edtech solution looking for a problem, asTop Hat CEO Mike Silagadze explains: “AR is not the disruptor it’s being madeout to be. In the higher education sector, AR applications will be the nextMOOCs: the initially vaunted technology expected to shake the American collegesystem to its foundations that ended up as a quaint teaching aid forvocational training.”6 For our technology in education 2019 predictions, thereare more important things to consider.
Technology in Education 2019: 5G
On the other hand one thing we do know is coming over the course of 2019 isthe U.S.-wide rollout of 5G technology.7 This is great news if your campus Wi-Fi network is starting to groan under the strain of hundreds of connectedphones, tablets, laptops, and now (thanks to the Internet of Things) watches,vending machines, toasters and so on.5G, which is in the early stages of implementation, is a new mobile spectrummeant to replace 4G/LTE, and it has two aims relevant to technology ineducation: it will be more robust for connecting large numbers of devices, andwork equally well inside and outside of buildings. It’s about 40 times as fastas the average home Wi-Fi network; in fact, as of 2019, you can now even buyhome routers that use 5G instead of Wi-Fi.8Some companies are looking at ways of taking fuller advantage of the speed andbandwidth to investigate new technological applications in the educationsector—Verizon, for instance, has set up a 5G EdTech Challenge to “to solvefor challenges including lack of student engagement, lack of teacher’s STEMexpertise and the need for more immersive personalized support for studentswith special needs.”9But for now, this increase in bandwidth and connectivity will open the door tomore reliable use of existing education technology, and fewer spinning beachballs waiting for your learning management system to update.
Technology in Education 2019: Generation Z in class
While bandwidth increases, bandwidth-connected students increase too. If youhaven’t already started seeing the generation after Millennials inclass—Generation Z—2019 is the year they’ll start appearing in earnest.Generation Z has been steeped in technology for their entire lives, which haveonly taken place within the 21st century. Why should they expect highereducation to be any different? As education expert Philip Preville explains,the postsecondary post-Millennial generation’s social lives are almostentirely online; they expect to have the content they need on demand (not outof entitlement, but because that’s how it’s always been for them); and theyprefer watching videos over reading text.10As one Generation Z graduate, Christen Palange, tells The Chronicle of HigherEducation, college is a place where new students can take responsibility fortheir technology use and put it to their advantage. Furthermore, she adds: “Idon’t know of any job that my class will go into where we won’t be using acomputer and have access to the internet.”11For teachers and for universities, this means a shift in technology usage tomeet the new generational cohort where they are. For instance, instead ofholding regular in-person office hours, an educator could make him- or herselfavailable on instant messaging apps such as WhatsApp or Signal. And groupprojects could take advantage of online collaboration tools such as GoogleDocs or Slack—the same ones they will be using in their career. Yes, educationtechnology can be that simple.
Technology in Education 2019: Inclusion
Technology can be either inclusive or exclusive. 2019 will be a year whereincreasingly large numbers of higher education institutions will have to workto meet accessibility guidelines—and to make sure that their students can reapthe benefits that technology in education can bring.Changes are already happening at simple levels. In November 2018, a Brooklyn-based man filed a lawsuit under the Americans With Disabilities Act against 50colleges saying that their sites were not accessible to prospective studentswho need screen readers to navigate the web.Peter Blanck, professor of law at Syracuse University, spoke to Inside HigherEd about the lawsuits. “It’s beside the point whether there are 50 or 1,000lawsuits,” he said. “These cases are reflective of a larger systemicproblem—that there is a lack of a strong commitment by many institutions totry to be as inclusive as possible.”12The misfit between technology and teaching goes both ways as well—when alearner brings or asks for adaptive technologies in order to access education,his or her needs are often not being met. The EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis andResearch Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology 2018 foundthe following:> “A plurality of students who self-identify as having a physical and/or> learning disability requiring accessible or adaptive technologies for their> coursework rated their institution’s awareness of their needs as poor.> According to students, larger and DR [doctorate-granting] public> institutions tend to have poorer awareness of disabled students’ needs than> do smaller and AA [associate of arts granting] institutions.>> In addition to institutional limitations, students’ fears of being> stigmatized or penalized for disclosing their disabilities and engaging> disability services to receive the aid they need may be contributing to low> rates of awareness.”There are consequences to this. A study by The Hechinger Report found that themajority of students with disabilities don’t get a college degree—in fact,only a third of students who enroll in a four-year course graduate withineight years.13 But as well as personalized education, study skill training,and using an adapted curriculum, many organizations are finding a helpful wayto bridge the gap is through flipped classrooms, blended learning andultimately, online courses.For students whose disabilities prevent them from physically attending a fullcourse load, a more seamless option would be to pursue or complete a degreethrough an established online program. But some are finding that these arebeing considered inferior to face-to-face courses.In an article for Inside Higher Ed, Brittany R. Collins argues that equitythrough online education is a rights issue. “Is it reasonable for studentswhose disabilities impede campus attendance to request technologicalaccommodations that would catalyze their remote participation in an otherwisein-person program?” she asks. “Could these alterations be frameddifferently—not as an institutional programmatic restructuring, but as a case-by-case option, since the technology already exists?”14It’s likely that in 2019, employers and higher education institutions alikewill be increasingly asked to offer equity between in-person and online-onlycourses, and adapt any online courses to be pedagogically equivalent.
Technology in Education 2019: Digital security and ransomware
A typical screen generated by WannaCry ransomware.As education technology becomes fully realized and devices become morewidespread, there are more and more ways in which data and importantinformation can leak or be held to ransom. According to EDUCAUSE’s 2018 whitepaper, Why Cybersecurity Matters: and What Registrars, Enrollment Managers andHigher Education Should Do About It15, the biggest mistake an individualprofessor could make is to assume that digital security in educationtechnology is solely the purview of the IT department.The main reason that everybody who uses education technology in 2019 should beaware of security holes is the increasing threat of ransomware—because ittargets individuals as a way of crippling institutions.Ransomware is when malicious code causes you to lose access to important dataand files but offers to restore them for a fee, often in Bitcoin (the transferof which can be made untraceable). The EDUCAUSE white paper adds that 91percent of cyberattacks started with a malicious e-mail, and that healthcare,higher education and government organizations are most at risk.Ransomware has hit academia before. In 2016, the University of Calgaryannounced that they had paid a ransom of $16,000 to retrieve “criticalresearch data” after such an attack. “We are a research institution, we areconducting world-class research daily and we don’t know what we don’t know interms of who’s been impacted. The last thing we want to do is lose someone’slife’s work,” said Linda Dalgetty, the university’s vice-president offinance.16The best thing that an individual can do to prevent these risks is by keepingregular backups of important work, such as research17, to avoid clicking oneven-mildly suspicious e-mails, and to be scrupulous about upgrading andkeeping devices clean of unknown software and hardware. (There have even beenrare reports of students themselves installing malicious software throughkeyloggers installed on USB keys.18)
8. Online Education Fairs and Summits
Another one of the great ideas in the edtech world is holding education fairsand summits online.Both the students and colleges or universities can interact from a singleplatform.Such education business ideas allow students from distant locations to getmore opportunities. Further, the institutes can also hold interactions withdiverse groups of students.There are very few similar education startup ideas in practice at present.Added to this, due to the present situations, students need similar resourcesand avenues to prepare better.You can build your education business ideas on these lines and progresstowards a better market share.
The highest trend in learning technology in the past year was social distanceeducation due to the fast spread of COVID-19 and the shutting down ofeducational institutes. The market for online training platforms has risentherewith. electronic Learning is knowledge shared digitally. It can also bean online presentation or an online course that lets staff or students learnthe required skills.Educational material is provided to students through computers, notebooks,tablets, or smart devices with E-learning. Not only saves time but also opensmore doors to immersive schooling. Instead of being submissive, studentsshould decide fast and easily what to learn, wherever they are. You can alsolearn by directly engaging with on-screen data, e.g., moving content fromplace to place. In comparison, E-learning’s decision-making scenarios oftenenable students to make decisions about what to study next.In E-learning students only retain information by reading or watching content,it modifies the delivery of education. Also, several courses in E-learningplatform include cinematics, podcasts, and visuals providing an integrativeand realistic experience.Check: eLearning software solutions
Video-based learning has become widely popular in educational displays inrecent years. Every day a video-based learning opportunity is created by theinternet and digital devices.This development is also expanding in the conditions of social distancelearning where students study on computer screens. Videos are of great benefitto improve lessons and make content understandable, particularly animatedvideos. It increases the results of students and decreases the workload forinstructors.