Several decades ago, an overhead projector was used for the first time in a classroom. Soon, calculators and computers inhabited learning environments. Audio-visual mediums have significantly impacted the evolution of learning over the years. Technology continues to be an important part of educational environments.
It’s no secret that technology provides instant access to information. This is why its presence in learning spaces is crucial. The evolution of instructional technology in education is a testament to the fact that there are various advantages to integrating digital solutions in classrooms. Let’s explore the meaning of instructional technology and how it has enriched learning experiences.
What Is Instructional Technology?
Today, a majority of academic institutions rely on technology to enhance the learning experience. In fact, it’s impossible to imagine the absence of technology in classrooms today. University students often carry their laptops to class. The increasing prevalence of technology hints at a greater cultural shift. Educators and instructors can help students learn in meaningful ways by relying on digital tools.
Instructional technology is one such byproduct of the great cultural shift. As the name suggests, it refers to the use of technology for instruction or education. It’s a systematic method of developing, designing, using, managing and evaluating the process of teaching and learning. The purpose of instructional technology is to provide solutions to instructional problems and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of learning.
Here are different types of instructional technology tools that have been used in classrooms over time:
Interactive whiteboards allow learners and instructors to manipulate texts and objects on a computer screen. It’s especially useful for drawing charts and explaining analytical concepts or frameworks.
Audio-visual aids such as colorful display boards emphasize the course content with greater impact. Video clips and movies are also a great way to discuss perspectives and build on ideas.
Learning Management System (LMS) is a software application that documents, delivers and reports educational courses and materials. There are several e-learning tools and platforms available online.
Through technological means, instructors can teach learners how to search and interpret information with greater efficiency.
What Are The Benefits Of Instructional Technology?
Instructional technology has the potential to improve learning habits in the long run. Here are some advantages of instructional technology in education that indicate its importance in current times:
Strong Feedback Channels
Instructional technology helps gather structured feedback through several means such as surveys and polls. Gaining structured feedback encourages instructors to incorporate changes and improve the learning experience. Instructors can use a variety of digital tools to gauge their students’ progress and offer suggestions to stay on track.
Instructional technology has made social or community learning possible. Instead of learning and working in silos, digital tools allow learners to work collaboratively beyond the classroom. Not only does it encourage collaborative learning among students but also encourages them to work closely with educators.
The use of instructional technology provides an all-round development as digital tools often support and encourage behavioral and social skills. Also known as 21st century skills, communication, creativity and collaboration skills are highly valued in the workplace. Therefore, learners prepare for the world of work as they navigate different interactive experiences.
In a world where virtual learning and online modes of education have become the new normal, various types of instructional technology have come as a boon. If instructors want to enhance their students’ learning experience, here are some examples of instructional technology that can make a significant impact:
PowerPoint presentations, where learners are encouraged to create and present content
Project-based learning, where learners gain knowledge and skills by working on one problem or project for extended periods of time
Embedding questions in videos, where students are asked to consume video content that includes questions
Improve The Learning Experience
Instructional technology can have impressive benefits if and when implemented well. Harappa’s Inspiring Faculty Program is designed to help faculty keep pace with the changing demands of the learning environment. The program seamlessly combines the best of a rich blended and integrated online-first learning journey. The program will equip faculty with necessary social, behavioral and cognitive skills, also known as Thrive Skills, to adapt to evolving learner needs and expectations. From understanding students’ preferences to catalyzing learning journeys, instructors will go above and beyond just imparting information. Schedule a demo and see the transformation for yourself!
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