Learning Technologies in 2020

By Murray Bourne, 04 Oct 2005

An interesting report from the US Depts of Commerce and Education, Visions 2020.2 Student Views on Transforming Education and Training Through Advanced Technologies (no longer available) outlines the results from asking 160,000 US, K-12 students “What would you like to see invented that will help your learning?”.

Some of the key outcomes (with my comments in bold):

  • Every student would use a small, handheld wireless computer that is voice activated. The computer would offer high-speed access with websites that are designed specifically for use by students. (Convenience of the device and proper design of the materials.)
  • Using this device, students would complete most of their inschool work and homework, as well as take online classes both at school and at home. (Ubiquitous learning – not tethered to the classroom.)
  • Students would use the small computer to play mathematics-learning games and read interactive e-textbooks. (Interactivity :-))
  • In completing their schoolwork, students would work closely and routinely with an intelligent digital tutor, and tap
    a knowledge utility to obtain factual answers to questions they pose. (Instant gratification – good or not?)
  • In their history studies, students could participate in 3-D virtual reality-based historic reenactments. (Authentic, or realistic learning)

Why are educators always several steps behind the students when it comes to technology? They should be at the cutting edge and driving the change…

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