ICT: The Ultimate Remedy for Better Education?

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Education is one of the most crucial and maybe the only power pushing the human race forward, and the source of every innovation. At the same time, it’s the most rigid domain reluctant to changes. How should education develop so that it continues its mission, and what role does ICT play in achieving this?

Reshaping education through technologies

“Information and communication technology (ICT) can complement, enrich and transform education for the better.”

UNESCO. "ICT IN EDUCATION".
RETRIEVED FROM https://en.unesco.org/themes/ict-education

Education transforms, and traditional learning changes. With the democratization and decentralization of education, formal education splits into small chunks enabling access to almost everyone. Now you can obtain a degree, let’s say, at Stanford University without even getting up from your couch in the Maldives. 

Generally speaking, ICT helps to communicate, create, disseminate, store, and manage information. Its integration can help tackle lots of pressing issues like the organization and management of education, tedious work automation, student assessment and evaluation, content creation and delivery, student engagement, etc..

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In short, ICT reshapes education by providing

 - Instant feedback
 - Quantification
 - Personalization

With the increase of education, providers, and learners, both in formal and informal education, it becomes necessary to facilitate all parties with the appropriate tools for receiving instant feedback during the course of their learning. These tools can be of great assistance for teachers in fully packed classrooms, who lack time and resources to address every question that students have; especially those of a self-learner sitting in their corner at the end of the world. 

Giving instant feedback and having gathered data on student outcomes, ICT can process and quantify them. This means this data can be used to make sure that quality education is delivered. Having control over the quality, educational institutions will be able to avoid extra costs and increase their productivity. This will not only help them stay on track but also grant more beneficiaries access to quality education.  

Quantification plays a great role not only in increasing the quality of education but also creating space for personalized learning. With lots of tools already in the market, ICT provides different solutions which can be adjusted to learners’ preferences and needs. 

Taking into account all the above-mentioned aspects, can we insist that ICT is an ultimate remedy to all issues that we currently have in education?

ICT: an ultimate remedy?

However attractive, it’s difficult to say that ICT is a cure to all of our problems in education. There are diverse impediments hindering the integration of ICT in education.

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When looking closer at the processes of teaching and learning, it’s easy to notice that there is an imbalance. Learners are far more advanced in using technology than teachers are. This slows down the use of ICT in the classroom. 

On the other hand, teachers are not convinced of the great importance of ICT solutions, like AI, full-sensory virtual or brain-to-brain learning in the classroom, because they are too abstract and don’t directly heal their day-to-day “headaches.” This is the reason teachers resist using high technologies and prefer their good old analog teaching models. 

Another reason keeping teachers away from using technology is the fear of failure. They are not trained on how to correctly adopt ICT in the classroom. 

But the most decisive point is the detachment between ICT and pedagogy. The teaching staff remains an outsider in the development process of digital tools and solutions. In most cases, ICT doesn’t consider the immediate problems teachers encounter on a daily basis. 

What now?

Granting that ICT has a great impact in reshaping education and making it better, we must, however, assert that education (and any field) will and can never be 100% digitized. Teachers will and can never be replaced. It’s out of the question that technology has transformed the way we learn, obtain and process information. This, in its turn, technology changes the role of teachers and educational institutions, in general. Technology transforms the teacher from being a source of information to a moderator who leads students in the world of knowledge and teaches them how to work with information obtained through technologies. From this perspective, a teacher will always have a steady place.

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What technology can do is to help a teacher realizing this. A teacher’s burden can be relieved and learning made more productive not by creating a completely online model, but by flipping the classroom model and combining the integration of digital media and interactive learning activities in class. With this type of blended learning repetitive tasks, research and homework will be carried out online. The offline, physical classroom will become a place for conceptual discussions guided by the teacher. 

Another advantage teachers can benefit from is the moderate use and down-to-earth solutions of ICT designed for the classroom. Tutor Platform believes that EdTech world should be aware of teachers’ pain points. For this, closer cooperation of technology and educators is needed. After years of working together with schools and training centers and carrying out its own research this is what Tutor Platform understood;

Students struggle with:

 - An impersonal learning approach
 - Attention-deficit
 - “Blind” learning outcomes
 - Outdated and irrelevant learning materials
 - Motivation deficit and boredom


Teachers struggle with:

 - Curriculum and lesson plan preparation 
 - Overcrowded classrooms
 - Repetitive administrative workload
 - Homework planning
 - Continuous assessment and evaluation

 

School managers struggle with:

 - Quality control
 - Tedious paperwork
 - Financial and staff management

That is why we’ve built Tutor Platform, an end-to-end SaaS solution, helping educational institutions organize, run, manage, configure and monitor all their processes. This is an ultimate platform option for students, teachers, school managers and facilitators which combines online and offline teaching and learning.

And, when questioning what the impact of ICT in education is, remember:

Technology is the means to an end and not the end goal.

 

Article by Tutor
Tutor is a platform designed to make non-formal teaching and learning more interactive, organized and enjoyable for everyone involved in these processes. It is comprised of 3 main products; Tutor Learning Management System, Course Finder, and Tutor App.

Illustrations by https://icons8.com

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