Instructional technology will revolutionize higher education
Computer science, AI, and other technologies greatly impact every industry. The educational system is also becoming more digitalized. During COVID-19, students had to continue studying from their homes. That often meant they had to receive most of their learning materials in digital format. Consequently, professors and teachers had to adjust and move on to online teaching, as well. They started incorporating various new methods to get the best result possible.
At the same time, universities started developing a relatively new field. They are currently training instructional technologists to work in this new direction. The training participants will then use these lessons to improve both teaching and learning.
According to professors, the teaching techniques have undergone a serious change over the past three years. When the coronavirus pandemic forced people to stay at home, various trends of remote instruction accelerated. Thus, field specialists started working on new technologies to make the shift from classroom teaching to online one possible. Higher education institutions had to adjust to this new system, as well, even though some of the instructors were reticent to adopt these tools.
While there are professors, who firmly believe that online teaching can’t replace physical interaction in the classroom, the experience showed that students could amass the same level of knowledge if the teaching methods are good enough.
Still, the pandemic era has ended, thankfully, and we’re not going back. Though most students returned to physical classrooms, the universities decided to evolve technologies and continue using them in the future. In fact, the new tech-based methods are becoming as vital a part of the educational system as textbooks once were.
How will the universities use the new technology?
The field of instructional technology is still evolving. Developers have been contemplating this concept for decades, trying out various possibilities. This tech will use everything from calculators to virtual reality features and tools that could help teachers. The program aims to simplify the studying process for students.
However, in its pure form, instructional technology adheres to a philosophy of teaching teachers how to teach students effectively.
Ray Pastore, a professor of instructional technology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, noted that instructional technology became very popular during the coronavirus pandemic. All the universities and colleges clamored to implement it. This program essentially taught them to teach online.
Pastore also added that instructional technology is a whole field involving theories, models, and processes, as well as a whole literature base around the subject and people teaching or studying it. He is currently a faculty member working in UNC Wilmington’s instructional technology program, but Pastore is also training instructional technologists who will later become the pioneers of this growing field.
Many professors and instructors are interested in the subject, and their number is still soaring. The program will help these people to learn how to use tech tools for teaching. Furthermore, every industry will benefit from these features, as they will help a new generation of professionals reach their full potential. Instructors will share their expertise with their students. As a result, society will eventually benefit from the achievements of this project.