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Digitisations means educators need to adapt teaching styles

28 Apr 15

The rise of the digital world, powered by mobile technology ,is changing how learning takes place in the classroom. 

The need to address this change was a main theme that emerged at the 10th Annual Education Leadership Forum held last month. 

The forum brought together more than 107 education leaders from 10 countries across Asia Pacific to discuss upcoming trends in education, emerging technologies, and the ‘need to foster creativity’ in the classroom.

"Millennials have a very different approach to learning and educators need to adapt their teaching styles to continue engaging this new breed of student,” Doctor Tim Kitchen, senior education Advocate APAC, says in a statement. “At the same time, the digitisation of content means that educational institutions also need to change their strategies for engaging and attracting the best and brightest students.
 
During the event, Adobe launched the results of its study, ‘Transforming Education with Mobile and Digital Technology’, which surveyed more than 1,000 educators from 13 countries across Asia Pacific. The study aimed to gauge the state of mobile technology adoption in the classroom and the importance of mobility and digital tools in education.

“Surprisingly, the study found that far from being reluctant to admit mobile devices to classrooms, educators strongly believe that their proliferation is already having a positive impact, and influencing for the better the way instruction is delivered to students,” Kitchen says. 

“While traditionalists may claim that mobile devices in the classroom can be a distraction, they are now in the minority with 77% of survey respondents felt that there was a positive overall net effect to having mobile devices strategically integrated into the teaching process.”

The study highlighted specific barriers to the proliferation of mobile technology in educational institutions. Across Asia Pacific, educators felt that budget allocation (39%) and issues with integration of mobility with existing infrastructure (27%) were the top two crucial areas to overcome for faster adoption of mobile technology in academic institutions.

At the end of the two-day event, Kitchen says educators concluded that what was most vital was not focusing on teaching techniques or strategies, but instead ensuring the student learning experience was enhanced to capture the attention and imaginations of a new generation of students who have grown up naturally surrounded by digital technology and mobile devices. 

“To them, swiping on a screen comes as a natural first response and educators felt that they need to better understand this shift in behaviour in order to evolve their teaching curricula down the line,” Kitchen explains. 

“One often-repeated line at the conference was keynote speaker Dan Haesler’s urging to ensure students were “in task vs. on task”- in other words, making sure that students were fully immersed in their learning experience as opposed to ticking off checkboxes on a list of things that need to be done.”

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