EDTECH 541: Future Trends in Higher Education

Reading over the 2017 NMC horizon report for higher education, it was interesting to see the expected technology trends that will have an impact on teaching and learning. While I am not a teacher, I do believe these trends affect everyone involved in the institutions that will apply these methods, therefore it should be researched what to expect for the future. These are the trends I felt should be considered and used in learning approaches.

Deeper Learning Approaches is one of the trends listed that I feel is an approach that should be applied into education. It is meant as creating curriculum that is challenging for learners as they need to use critical thinking and problem solving skills that will help to increase learner motivation. Applying real world scenarios are beneficial to learners as the skills they are taught and practice motivates their participation.

Redesigning Learning Spaces is another trend I can see being useful for learners in a few ways. For one, if the course uses a flipped classroom model it may help to increase student participation because students have more accessibility and flexibility when conducting their studies. Another way this trend can be useful is changing the classroom setup completely. For example, some subjects are difficult to teach in the normal classroom setting such as computer and digital related curriculum. Designing layouts that will replicate real world working environments will help prepare learners that traditional classroom cannot offer.

Collaborative Learning Approaches is important for learners as it can prepare them for their futures. Being able to work as a team player and understanding the process as a group is a required skill most employers seek. This approach also offers the ability to learn from each other which can present different perspectives on the learning material which can also help build upon your current knowledge of the learning content.

Improving Digital Literacy is a must as we live a digital age where basic computer skills are not enough to get by in most markets. Digital literacy issues can prevent learners from participating in certain academic programs if they do not meet the requirements. By adding different internet applications into lesson plans you can help learners gain experience using different technologies to help improve digital literacy. With a lot of career fields incorporating the use of internet and/or cloud based applications into their requirements, it is left to educational institutions to help to meet these needs of the students for future success.

Mobile Learning is a popular trend because humans are more connected to each other than ever before due to people using mobile devices as microcomputers. Being on the go with the ability to access information at any time offers convenience to learners and presents new opportunities. Mobile learning provides learners with accessibility that encourages participation, and increases motivation because it is on a device they would probably be using anyway. Making use of mobile apps to create, collaborate, and share assignments gives learners new perspectives how on to learn and experience the content material.

Becker, S. A., Cummins, M., Davis, A., Freeman, A., Hall, C. G., & Ananthanarayanan, V. (2017). NMC Horizon Report: 2017 Higher Education Edition.The New Media Consortium.

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