Schools Need to Prepare for Evolving Edu Tech
With every technology, there are distinct phases in adoption. The first is the users who adopt it early followed by the users who wait till it is accepted followed by the users who wait until it is established and accepted. In fact, over the past few years, the information technology industry has coined a term to describe suppliers to merely deliver the equipment to the destination and leave it to the customers to put everything together to make it work. These people, referred to as "box droppers", are looking at a guaranteed recipe for failure because their responsibility is limited to dropping off the edu tech equipment at school and relying on teachers to make it function.
Decisions about edu tech hardware are left to groups of stakeholders such as the governing council, heads of departments and teachers and sometimes parents also get involved. However, in the absence of a clear cut direction and strategy, these initiatives mostly fail because specific teachers are not given the responsibility for succeeding in the implementation effort.
In the implementation of any edu tech program, it is important to establish where in the adoption process the teachers can be placed because it can safely be assumed that students will be among the earliest adopters and well ahead of their teachers. The success of technology-based education systems lies in the availability of teachers who are prepared to teach and promote education using the system.. System suppliers should be proactive in the evaluation and training of teachers and the chances of success are vastly enhanced if teachers can be trained to become early adopters.
Experience has demonstrated that it does not always suffice if schools simply follow other schools blindly in devising and implementing edu tech systems. If an evaluation has to be conducted about the specific needs of a particular school, this must necessarily include the identification of the optimum solution and teachers who are seen as early adapters should be an integral part of the process. Students are almost always early adopters but the important question is whether teachers and their departments are ready to accomplish this. Probably the single most important factor in technology-based teaching systems is to identify teachers who are enthusiastic and willing to be completely involved in the implementation of these systems.
Social networks also have an important role to play because students and teachers alike are given the capability of communicating their thoughts and ideas on a web page in the middle of an interactive environment. After all, social networking communities are inhabited by people who are interested in a particular subject and the like to hang out together. The National School Boards Association has determined that almost all students who have access have used social networking technology and around half of them talk specifically about homework when they are online. This data supports the hypothesis that bringing these technologies into the classroom can be of great assistance to teaching methods in the context of edu tech.
The important objective is to motivate students to become self-sufficient with the help of educational technologies and to encourage them to build communities for collaborative education. Every student has different learning requirements and providing a framework should enable them to cope successfully.