New Tech Creating Opportunities In Higher Education

New Tech Creating Opportunities In Higher Education

One of the best things about technology is the different ways it enables change in institutions. But that change isn’t necessarily taken as a good thing by everyone involved. Take, for instance, the massive amounts of technology that have been developed and are now being used in the world of higher education. In some cases, that new tech is being put to use to make life easier for both teachers and students.

Class materials, syllabi, and educational opportunities can all be found online using one of the apps like Blackboard that most higher education institutions have been working with for some time now. Students can communicate with each other, as well as with the professor, quickly and easily while using this technology.

Take the flipped classroom system, where students study course materials on their own, and then spend time solving problems and discussing material in class, rather than being taught the material and engaging in problem solving at home by themselves. This isn’t a new idea by any means, but it’s easier to accomplish with the help of online material and resources.

Another revolution that has begun with the help of new technology is the rise of online classes. For students enrolled in college, many classes are offered online, and interactions with the students and professors are all done online, or with periodic meetings.

In turn, that has led to MOOCs—Massive Open Online Classes—which anyone with an internet connection has access to. Some students can get credit for the courses, but most offer a certification of completion, rather than actual college credit.

The pushback to all of this has come from those who don’t see a great benefit coming from the digitization of classes and coursework. In many cases, they do have a valid point. Some people, students included, feel that they work better with real interactions with their professor in a classroom environment, rather than an entirely virtual classroom.

But no one is suggesting going entirely virtual, and ignoring the benefits that these kinds of innovations bring can be dangerous for a university’s bottom line, as well as their reputation. What we need to see happen is for faculty to be encouraged to use new technology, and given some time to experiment and find what works best for them and their students.

That means administrators are going to have to be the ones who encourage organizational change by investing in technology and rewarding faculty who take on the challenges of teaching with it. The road to better education through innovation won’t always be easy, but it will be worthwhile to pursue.

More higher education institutions are developing and nurturing these kinds of programs because they see where higher education is headed. If you want your school to stay on the cutting edge, then adopting new and useful educational tools is only the beginning. Give us a call today if you’d like to hear more about how N2N can bring your campus into the future.

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