any accelerated changes occurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic throughout the world. One area where it undeniably had a large impact was education and learning delivery. The pandemic’s impact on society has, undoubtedly, shifted the way we learn for the future. From taking virtual classes at home, to encouraging certain demographics to pursue a degree or diploma, to changes in overall curriculums, we’ve come across many adjustments that are here to stay.
So what’s the future of education after COVID-19? In this blog, we’ll go over the top five digital trends in education that rapidly increased in usage because of the pandemic, such as online learning. These trends are continuing to be widely used because of their potential and reach. As well, we will discuss what education post-COVID-19 can look like.
The top five trends include:
Let’s get into it:
The clearest area where we saw a shift was the use of educational technology. Technological learning has seen heightened usage because learning had to continue, despite what was happening in the world. People could not simply put their life on pause for an indefinite amount of time, and so learning continued through desktops, laptops, and tablets at home. The concept of technological learning has also become a lot more widely accepted.
Online learning courses increased the use of learning management systems (such as Blackboard and D2L). Before the pandemic, some professors and instructors may not have used these tools at all, but they proved to be extremely helpful when faced with no other option. Online learning was used globally in all schools, colleges, and universities for education in Canada. While most institutions prefer in-person learning and have continued back on that path, they are being more flexible and offering lectures online and digital submissions for those who may have issues attending – something that they will continue to do for the foreseeable future as health has become more of a priority.
Many people always think about pursuing further education but put it off for one reason or another. The pandemic gave people the push they needed to pursue higher education. Some of the demographic groups who decided to pursue education and do something for themselves include mothers, career-changers, and even the elderly. The lockdowns allowed people to have more time, and because of that, it opened doors for many who wanted to strive for knowledge, practical experience, and improve themselves where they could to find meaningful work.
Technological learning, or taking classes online, has removed the stigma from itself and people see value in it. Because of this, we will continue to see more variety in the types of people that are getting an education, regardless of age, what stage they’re at in life, or what responsibilities they may have. Now more individuals are open to pursuing further education through the channel of online learning. They realize the benefits it can get them such as flexibility, time saved, and being able to study while balancing while not having to compromise or other things like home life and work.
Many educational programs are decreasing the theoretical learning and increasing the practical training involved in their courses. There are always theoretical components or classes involved because it is important, but most of the time, practical learning is of emphasis so it can get students on a fresh, exciting career path and give them something new to look forward to. During the pandemic, many people realized that they would like to see a change in their lives. This propelled them to opt for institutions like public or private career colleges that would get them the training they need to improve themselves and gain the confidence and knowledge to embark on a new journey.
Many programs in institutions are revising their curriculums so that students feel that the time they’re spending is worthwhile for them and that their efforts will pay off once they graduate, increasing their satisfaction with the course they took. While academia is very important and has its own place, the average person is looking for an education that can lead them to a sustainable and well-paying job, and now more diplomas and degrees are introducing internships, practicums, and opportunities to connect with industry professionals – something that we will see more of as time goes on.
While the concepts of different subject matters generally stay the same, schools, teachers, education assistants, and boards have been figuring out new and innovative ways to keep the students engaged. Most of the time, lectures won't cut it anymore, and this is partly because individuals now have a lower attention span than they once did. For young and adult students alike, there can be many distractions if they are involved in remote or distance learning.
If educational professionals continue on the same path they did previously, with mundane content and the same assignments, they would lose their audience and see a drop in numbers for grades. That’s why bringing in fresh exercises, exciting activities, and engaging conversations, in place of or in addition to lectures, will lead to better results, to the benefit of students and institutions alike. This is something that we’re seeing across the board, as time, technology, and interest develop, educational institutes will not only update their content but also heavily consider the mode of delivery and how the content can be best absorbed by students in a fascinating way.
There are a plethora of things that one could do when given an online platform. Many instructors have opted for an asynchronous approach – which means that there’s no set time that students need to be in class. They can watch recorded lectures and read the textbook, do the assignments at any point in time that suits them. This is great for those students who love to learn on their own and retain information better that way. It opens up doors and is more accessible to those with busy schedules and those who simply prefer a different style of learning than the regular methods.
Asynchronous learning is here to stay, and might even be a preferable mode of delivery for many different subjects related to science, technology, arts, and more. It’s a great way to deliver courses. Now, many programs are doing a mix of both – live classes and asynchronous – and students can choose what suits them. It also works best for shorter courses that may only be a few weeks long, as they focus on learning and having resources rather than examinations and grades.
Experiencing a pandemic, of course, is never a good thing. People suffer not only from the disease itself but their mental health and physical well-being also deplete. However, in terms of education, it may have been the necessary push that we needed to implement these positive changes into the way we approach learning as a whole. The use of technology has definitely made education more accessible, therefore allowing more people to get an education who will contribute to the benefit of society.
We have experienced in the past couple of years that online education can be just as beneficial as learning in a physical classroom. Get higher education today with ABM College’s programs in health, business, and technology.
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