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Tech for teaching: five trends changing higher education

Tech for teaching: five trends changing higher education

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Published by: Crowdsourcing.org on Jul 10, 2012
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10 July 2012, 6.34am AEST
Tech for teaching: five trends changinghigher education
Entire universities may one day fit in students' pockets
More than 1,000 years of formal university learning and teaching does not changequickly, or without a struggle. But we are starting to see some key tech trendsengaging staff and students
and therein lies the secret to change!Here are five key trends emerging across the global higher education sector.
As we move forward, higher education will become 
resulting in students carrying their university “in their pockets”.
 Mobile computing devices (such as smartphones and tablets) are more affordable,
more accessible and easier to use than desktop computers. It won’t be long before
batteries will last for days with no 
. Mobile devices provide more than enough functionality to serve as a primarycomputing device 
 and are purchased
 across theglobe.
Tablets, in particular, are hugely popular. A 
 shows the number of US college students with a tablet has more thantripled in the last 12 months.In the past three to four years, the small, low-cost 
 for thesedevices (apps) have been the 
 in terms of diversity, qualityand volume.Apps are available for a wide variety of uses, such as providing access to 
 in university libraries and course materials
as the video below, from
America’s Duke Univer 
sity, illustratesWe will see many new and innovative education apps emerging very soon, andwith them attempts by educators to embed those apps in their everyday teachingpractices.Even something as simple as being able to read course materials on the move (via asmartphone or tablet) has proven hugely beneficial.
Feeding into mobile universities is …
ConnectivityCloud computing
 quietly unifies content and activity on the many devices peopleuse in everyday life. Whether connecting at home, work, school, on the road or insocial spaces, people increasingly rely on cloud computing to access theirinformation and communities.Connec
tivity has also become much more “aware”. The smartphone in our pocket
knows where it is located and therefore where we are. These devices record ourcoordinates as we take photographs, talk to friends or post updates to socialnetworking websites.Cloud-based computing is making the embeddingof computing gadgets of all kinds an essentialpart of our lives. Gradually, many educationalapplications will also rely on the cloud.Learning design will increasingly take account of 
the potential for “learning locations” – 
in thissense, the world becomes the university campus.
Increasingly we’ll see location
-based servicesutilised as a key learning tool in higher
education. We’ll see the management student in a
case-study location, the social worker in thecommunity, the nurse in the hospital, thearchaeologist in the field, still connected withuniversity resources and a community of peerlearners.
In the past few years we’ve seen an explosion of free, online educational resources, starting some ten years ago with MIT’s
. Information is everywhere; the challenge is to make effective use of it forknowledge
. Academics are beginning to explore new models that focus on embedding openresources while still protecting the academic value and acknowledging authorship.
UBC Library 

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