Exponential technologies in education are redefining what teaching, learning, and student success look like. They are also shaping how educators approach academics and student wellness and are the tool for ensuring that students are prepared for how the world will change beyond 2020.
What is it?
To understand the impact of exponential technologies in education, we must first understand what exponential technology is. Exponential technologies are driving what Forbes is calling the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” and can be described as innovations that advance exponentially with disruptive economic and lifestyle effects. They are those technologies that are shaping business and social problems in previously impossible ways, and whose current price-performance makes them feasible for long term, evolutionary use. They can be observed in artificial intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual realities (AR and VR), digital biology, biotechnology, robotics, autonomous machinery, and so much more.
Exponential technology is the intersection of where technology and problems meet and are resolved. But, what does this look like in education?
In schools, we are observing changes in how students learn and engage with success. Student-driven learning, mental wellbeing, and digital transformation have created school environments that we have never seen before. This is a problem because, up till recently, educators have not had the tools or knowledge to understand what appropriate academic evolution looks like for a digital age.
Exponential Technologies in Education
An important note about exponential technology is that it is changing how people live and is driven by information. When it comes to schools, they are changing what needs to be learned. Technologies like AI, big data, and VR/AR are changing how teaching occurs already. More than that, they are enabling personalised learning paths and improving teaching experiences. The exponential growth of these technologies are shaping what it means to be successful in a Future Workplace, and have, as a result, been embraced by K12 educators around the world. Exponential technologies in education are helping redefine what education actually looks like – and how it is approached.
The skillset that students will need to succeed in a Future Workplace has changed, and educators need to be able to equip them with the tools they need to thrive beyond graduation. This means working with new information and reshaping learning to focus on creative thinking, problem-solving, collaboration, and communication; skills that are non-routine manual tasks and that enhance social interaction and problem-solving.
The young people of today need skills that will help them keep up with technology. The World Economic Forum’s New Vision for Education Report identifies “21st Century Skills” across three categories – Foundational Literacies, Competencies, and Character Qualities.
- Foundational Literacies: The basics of education, which include reading, writing, science, and mathematics. In an era of rapid change, these are still the foundation of learning.
- Competencies: Critical thinking, creativity, communication, and collaboration are the four competencies required by modern students – and the four things that computers aren’t very good at. They are all needed for success beyond graduation and are driven by exponential technologies in education – when those technologies are utilised correctly.
- Character Qualities: Curiosity, persistence, adaptability, and leadership are the tools required for students to become active creators of their own lives beyond school. Finding what is meaningful to them is fundamental to their success and is a cornerstone of successful modern education.
If educators understand that exponential technologies in education are already present in their classroom, the next question should be how they can embrace them to drive meaningful student success.
If you want to discover how to make the most of your digital investments and embrace a shift in modern education – contact MOQdigital today.