The 21st century is a technologically advanced era. We see robotic machines taking over almost every human activity and work. Every sector, may it be industry, health, medicine, games, has been effected in either a good or bad way with the advancement in the field of technology. Like all other spheres of life, the field of education has also been affected by advancement in technology.
Education in its general sense is a form of learning in which the knowledge, skills, and habits of a group of people are transferred from one generation to the other through teaching, training, and research. Technological developments like digital cameras, projectors, mind training software, computers, PowerPoint presentations, and 3D visualization tools has become a source for teachers to help students grasp concepts easily.
Technology has enabled teachers far and wide to impart knowledge and education to students in a better way than the past. Although classrooms still look the same as they did a century ago and some might argue that technology hasn’t really made a huge impact in the classroom. If nothing else, technology has made access to education easy.
In the past, the only source of knowledge was through books. People traveled far and wide to seek knowledge. Today, it is available at our fingertips. Not only this, it has also enhanced the scope and level of learning by students. Different gadgets like tablets, iPads, laptops, and smartboards not only provide a different learning and teaching experience but also help both teachers and students in their expressions as well.
The internet has globalized the whole world and everyone is able to access the mass of information in a click. There are schools now where students from all over the world connect through “Video Conferencing” without ever leaving their classrooms. People learn foreign languages online by grouping up students with a teacher from another country.
Distant learning and online education have become a very important part of the education system these days. With the introduction of online degree programs, there is hardly any need of being present physically in a classroom. Several foreign universities have also started online degree courses that students can join without any geographical limitations.
In short, thanks to technology communication and collaboration have been enhanced among teachers and learners around the globe. With the worldwide reach of the Internet and the ubiquity of smart devices that can connect to it, a new age of anytime anywhere education is dawning.
The inappropriate or overuse of any technology has serious implications and long lasting consequences.
Due to excessive usage of online chatting and shortcuts, the writing skills of today’s young generation have declined quite tremendously. These days, children are relying more and more on digital communication. Good writing skills and expansive vocabulary are slowly becoming a thing of the past. Dictionaries and other books have been replaced by Google. The young lot are becoming lax in proper grammar usage and cursive writing.
The instances of cheating in examinations and plagiarism have also increased drastically with certain technological advancements. Technological developments like graphing calculators, high-tech watches, mini cameras and similar equipment have become great sources to cheat in exams. All sorts of information easily available on the internet mean it is a lot easier to plagiarize than before. True there is anti-plagiarism software but nevertheless, the trend has seen a rise.
The increased use of gadgets by students has resulted in many health issues. Being unable to focus properly and pay attention to the task at hand is a common problem of our youth. Since everything is now present at the click of a finger, today’s generation has become impatient and needs results immediately without putting in persistent efforts. Cases of obesity are on the rise among young adults and children alike because of being glued to screens and not having as many physical activities like children in the past used to have.
Technology can change the way a child thinks. It changes the way the brain is wired! More usage of online search engines means children and youth are better at searching and obtaining information but poor at retaining it. Knowledge retention and memory are getting affected. Deep thinking has been replaced by the superficial flooding of information. Imagination is directly affected when a child watches educational or entertainment material on a screen rather than reading it in a book.
Technology has both positive and negative impacts on every sphere of life. It is always ideal to keep everything in life balanced. The role of parents and education providers is vital here. More emphasis needs to be laid on book reading than ever before. Our screen use MUST BE kept limited. Some things are just better the good, old-fashioned way.
It is always a great idea to use things for our benefit rather than letting things use us!