Sunday, November 11, 2012

Futurism and change

How will tchnology change education in 10 years? This is what I was asked in one of the interviews. I did not have a good answer at that time. Now, I still do not know the answer. It is hard to imagine the impact of technology on education with my knowledge. One thing that I can sure is that we will still have the traditional face-to-face classroom with a teacher and students in 10 years. However, the classrom will be equipped with technological devices.

What kind of technological devices will be availabe in the classroom in 10 years? Maybe a simulator? Students may be able to perform a task as a doctor, a judge, an Amazon exporer, etc individually or in groups. They may need to research a given topic and collaborate to complete the given task in the simulation. Would it happen? I don't know. What I know is that teachers should be prepared for new changes in society and education.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Mobile learning

One week ago, I bought a Samsung Note 2 cellular phone, which can be extensively used for mobile learning. First, it has a big screen (5.5 inches). Second it has a stylus and lecture note tool which can create text, graphs, mathmatical symbols and insert images, videos, idea maps, maps, and so on. Now I write my notes using the stylus on my phone. Soon, we will be able to see people taking notes on their phone during a meeting or during a lecture. I also downloaded Netflix, a movie watching app, and let my daughter watch educational shows on my phone. A new phone enables me to do more things than one week before. I am sure that young students who are good at new technology will be able to use this kind of new mobile device in many different ways, not only for their leisure but also for their study.

My students already use their cell phone during class to review the powerpoint slides and word documents that I uploaded to Laulima. They search a word in a free online Korean dictionary and listen to audio files of the textbook from the textbook website. They use free apps to learning Korean numbers and basic words. For now, they use their device to view information and learning materials.

However, I think we should encourange students use their mobile device for collaborative learning. For example, they can use Twitter, Facebook Group, Google+, and so on. I have to learn more about mobile learning and encourage students to try. One problem is that not all students can afford to have a smart phone or any other mobile device. Maybe later, schools may be able to rent a mobile device.