Technology has fundamentally changed the way we learn. It’s undeniable. Without technology, you wouldn’t be reading this article right now. While people may debate whether this change has been positive or negative, there’s no denying that learning has changed significantly in the digital era. Similarly, this shift has been turbo-charged by the coronavirus pandemic, leaving students across the world needing to adapt quickly to online learning. As they finally return to the classroom, educators will need to consider their approach to truly engage this tech-savvy generation of students.
We put this to the test and spoke with four students to understand how exactly they want to learn:
Roshni: “I’ve always hated textbooks because I find them incredibly difficult to concentrate on. Most of the time they are filled with irrelevant information and I just want to sift out the essential parts – so I always appreciate when teachers break down the text into the most important bullet points.”
Kevin: “Whenever there’s something I don’t understand, I head straight to YouTube. I believe in learning from multiple perspectives on any given topic. A teacher may offer just one perspective in the classroom, so by introducing other perspectives or approaches, learning would definitely be improved.”
John: “Would you rather read 19 pages out of a text book or watch a two minute video? The information may not be as well retained through a short video, but it provides visuals that are essential for learning. I find the best combination to be watching a video explanation after reading parts of a textbook.”
Natalie: “I definitely think there will be a hybrid version of education as we move into the future, not only split between in-person and online learning, but also between long-form and bite-sized education. In the past two years, there has been so much money poured into developing online and more efficient learning tools, and I definitely see the benefits.”