Teachers Still Matter Despite EdTech


Technology does not mean that we do not need teachers. They have to adopt tech to supplement their skills. Almost every effective method of learning involves having a teacher. The teacher can coach and motivate a student to go far beyond what the student believes himself or herself. Technology is impacting every sector of our lives. Education is no exception It still needs a human touch. A Portuguese study from 2010 found that schools with slow broadband and a ban on sites such as YouTube had better results than high-tech ones.

EdTech is getting attention from a number of philanthropists.The combined value of the North American and European edtech markets (including further and higher education as well as schools) is set to grow from $75bn in 2014 to $120bn in 2019, according to Technavio, a research firm.

Research in two fields is shaping the new technology. Artificial intelligence (AI) is letting machines learn about the pupils using them by studying the data produced in the process. And research drawing on psychology, cognitive science and other disciplines is providing practical insight into the “science of learning”. However, the students still learn best with a teacher who can challenge and motivate them. The teacher who can fire up the curiosity of the student can work wonders. In 2015 a vast study of 1,200 education meta-analyses found that, of the 20 most effective ways of boosting learning, nearly all relied on the craft of a teacher.

But if teachers do not start adopting tech, the students will be deprived of the combined power of humans and machines. that combination can truly create magic. Education is all about discovering the power of that magic.

The Economist recently did a cover story on Learning. Don’t miss reading it. I am a big fan of The Economist. It is my favorite read.

Source: The Economist http://econ.st/2v1xDsN

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  1. Is there no limit to technology? I wonder.

    That ad campaign of Idea network comes to mind. I believe you might have seen that ad where Abhishek bachan and his friend comeup with a solution for ever growing population. Internet and smart phones. Though it was funny to watch, on a second note, isn’t it a bit condescending, I mean what kind of a person do you have to be to depend on a gadget for sexual self control?

    As such with education, animations and wikipedia are all fine, but how dumb do we have to be to outsource the task of keeping students attentive in class to technology? Teaching starts with teacher-student engagement and I believe relying on super-smart technology to do that job, regardless of how smart the edtech is, will ultimately be self defeating as its alienating.

    Just my two cents

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