The Sweet Relationship between Higher Education and Information Technology

by Zazz January 28, 2020 Time to Read Blog: 5 minutes

Today, Big Data and Artificial Intelligence are topics that never cease to surprise us with their reach in our daily lives, basically everything around us is susceptible to the study of these areas.

In this digital process, education plays a fundamental role, not only because it allows students to acquire skills necessary to function in this society focused on technological knowledge, but because it provides tools to Higher Education institutions to improve the quality of life of the whole community.

Technology is being integrated into processes that range from academic planning and evaluation, to student follow-up, and provides a series of benefits that help improve efficiency and productivity. Here we tell you what they are:

6 Benefits of technology in education:

Collaboration:

The management of the classroom is no longer only task of the teacher, new technological platforms for Higher Education integrate all stakeholders to improve the learning experience; Administrators can monitor if class objectives are met, and students can share their concerns and keep track of their grades.

Time optimization:

The systematization of academic planning through software helps a better distribution of the available infrastructure (considering travel time of students and teachers), a teaching assignment according to the hourly availability and decreases the planning time.

Flexibility and continuous improvement:

There are already platforms that assist institutions in managing the information of the graduation profile, curricular meshes of curricula, programs and syllabus of the courses, facilitating management for accreditation processes and ensuring consistency with the objectives stated in the discharge profile.

Greater communication and management of teachers:

The software implementation includes a follow-up not only of teachers’ actions in relation to classes, but also in other aspects such as research, academic management and the improvement of personal skills. With this, universities can monitor the work and align it with their strategic plans.

Costs reduction:

The use of new technologies in education allows cost reduction. No graphic material is necessary and everything can be done through a program.

Rich data:

Before the digital transformation of Higher Education, the departments made decisions from their experience; today the public is diverse and that characteristic becomes an advantage to achieve student success. Software that uses machine learning can identify the risk of drop-out early and support students to reach their goal.

The data is facilitating the management of educational facilities, according to a report from the University of Huddersfield, who have already implemented an analytical reading system, “have been able to increase retention by providing a personalized service that has allowed to reach a dropout rate under the 10%.”

In the not too distant future, it is possible that thanks to the implementation of a data reading service, a completely personalized attention and help service can be delivered, oriented to the needs of each member of the community.

Integrating information technologies in education

One thing is to know the importance of ICT. Another is to be able to implement your application. UNESCO itself has prepared a framework program in information technology, with the level of skills that teachers need to integrate ICT into their professional practices.

This integrates not only the knowledge of technologies for the classroom and the planning of the courses, but also tools to improve the organizational and management capacities of both the classroom and collaborative groups. The project will end with the integration of technologies in educational institutions as a whole.

Thus, it will be increasingly necessary for teachers to have the ability to create networked environments for students to store, share and develop their work collaboratively, and learn to use technologies with flexible student-centered teaching-learning strategies.

This requires leadership. Teachers must be transformed for the continuous teaching and support process, and education institutions must develop a true vision of their establishments as a community, based on innovation and continuous learning, which is enriched by information technologies.

Are there risks when using these new technologies?

Yes, of course, everything has risks in this life outside and on the Internet and new technologies are no different. Many are concerned that access to so many types of leisure (movies, music, video games, etc.) becomes a distraction that prevents their children from concentrating on studies or useful use of them but this risk does not come from the technologies themselves but a misuse of them. In this regard, both the family and the school must educate in its correct use and set a good example, as well as control access to content for children and young people. The way to mitigate these risks is not to prohibit their use, since then they would not benefit from their multiple advantages, but by monitoring their use, educating and correcting when necessary.

New technologies inside and outside the classroom

The appearance of the classrooms seems almost the same, until you notice that there is no longer the typical blackboard with its chalk and the eraser. Little by little, electronic screens, laptops, tablets, digital books, multimedia tools, projectors, online applications and resources, virtual educational and interactive platforms and much more have been introduced. All these tools make teaching much more attractive for students and teachers.

Students are faced with a lot of information. One of its great challenges is to learn to find relevant information among millions of web pages, and that contains reliable information and contrast it, not to believe the first thing they read on Wikipedia or any blog. It seems simple compared to going to a library and reading several books, but it isn’t.

Advantages of using all these tools outside and inside the classroom?

In addition to those mentioned above:

  • Streamline communication between the entire educational communities: students, faculty, parents and guardians.
  • Its use in the classroom increases the motivation of the students. It is a fact that since they began to be used in classrooms, students are more motivated in the different areas they study.
  • The immediacy of access to resources, direct interaction between student and teacher, and being able to have all the work stored in the cloud.
  • Renew learning methods and processes. Currently, all education professionals have had to recycle to use these tools in the classroom and change the way they teach.
  • They allow the use of new educational resources. Thanks to the continuous evolution of new technologies, little by little, new devices that increase the quality of teaching are being incorporated into the classroom.
  • It takes more time in class. With the multitude of online activities that exist, students can learn more content in less time.
  • They involve the student in homework. Students learn by playing and without realizing the contents that are worked in class.
  • They encourage collaboration among students. Some tools allow you to create online projects between groups of students and each one does his part of the work and improves the final result.
  • Digital and audiovisual literacy. They allow students to acquire the digital and audiovisual skills necessary for their future.
  • They stimulate creativity, respect the pace of student learning, create curiosity and research spirit, can experiment and manipulate them.
  • They help increase the autonomy of students in their own learning.

However, not because we use them all, education will be better. We have to know to choose what tools we are going to use and for what and with what purpose, since all will be equally effective for the understanding of a certain content by our students.

In general, the use of the appropriate technologies allows to complement the learning of the children, to help them with the duties or to favor the advancement of their aptitudes, introducing a habit of study according to the current times.

Conclusion

How do higher education institutions adapt to the changing reality of society, actively contributing changes from the training of the best professionals?

It is about acting as an institution that learns and advances, and new technologies have made available the tools that provide multiple benefits to make that leap from being an outdated institution to achieve high performance and continuous improvement.

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The Sweet Relationship between Higher Education and Information Technology
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The Sweet Relationship between Higher Education and Information Technology
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Today, Big Data and Artificial Intelligence are topics that never cease to surprise us with their reach in our daily lives, basically, everything around us is susceptible to the study of these areas. In this digital process, education plays a fundamental role, not only because it allows students to acquire skills necessary to function in this society focused on technological knowledge, but because it provides tools to Higher Education institutions to improve the quality of life of the whole community.
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Zazz
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Zazz is a team of creative designers and software engineers, building innovative digital products in North America. Zazz has collaborated with Fortune 500 companies and Silicon Valley unicorns, to create solutions being used by millions of users across the globe.

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