The Tech Disruptors in Education

Technology has disrupted almost every aspect of people’s lives making productivity, entertainment, activity, and communication more efficient, interactive, and accessible. It has no less been a game-changer in the education sector. The range of options already available that make learning more streamlined and more attainable beyond traditional learner profiles is already advancing the knowledge market. More cutting edge technology, such as augmented reality (AR) and artificial intelligence (AI), could break even further ground.

Technology widens the playing field for people who can’t access traditional learning forums, and this is more true than ever while the world lives through the COVID-19 pandemic.

If the current crisis has got you frantically searching for free online medical lectures, consider these disruptive tech ideas instead.

Online booking in the Cloud

Using cloud services is an easy way to book courses or lessons while reviewing essential information.

Cloud-based booking systems, like Planyo, that integrate into websites and other applications, means learners can review details such as duration, substance, teaching credentials, and overall cost with a direct route to payment.

Collaboration platforms

Usually taking the form of a web-based video chat application, this type of tech typically allows realtime delivery of presentations with interaction and discussion as well.

Transferring the in-person lecture model into a virtual space means learning can have a global reach and provide opportunities for students to access a broader spectrum of expertise, including through guest presentations and panel discussions.

TodaysMeet is one example of this type of platform that allows discussion forums as well as a facility to deliver presentations and online seminars.

Chat rooms

Incorporating chat rooms into a learning environment means smaller groups can be initiated to read lectures, share study notes, or engage in seminars. There is also space for one-to-one discussions.

These types of tech solutions usually allow for screen sharing technology, so the teacher uses other materials such as power points or videos to provide demonstrations to the class and recordings so students can refer back to the lesson later on.

Competency-based Education

Competency-based education infers what has been a sticking point with pedagogy, that students in any educational program will have different skills and aptitudes for learning. Hence, it seeks to create an adaptive learning module, so students learn at their own pace without disrupting other students who are familiar with the material.

Competency-based education models also tend to allow progress tracking, highlighting average performance as well as disaggregated data according to subjects.

Lecturio is an excellent example of a competency-based model, specifically for medical students, changing how medicine is studied. Lecturio delivers medicine lectures through short consumable videos that help students get through difficult examinations like the United States Medical Licensing Examination, steps 1 and 2. It also incorporates quizzes and 3D anatomical models using multiple languages and providing downloaded materials.

Disruptive tech of the future

Virtual reality (VR), AR and AI are already in use, although with limited application in education. It has the potential to transform the sector, however.

VR, for instance, offers the possibility of immersing students into an educational program by recreating scenarios, which could be aptly applied to medicine, but also subjects like history or physics.

Microsoft Hololens is a product that creates 3D instructive models of human body functions in the medical school environment, for instance.

VR is expensive, which prohibits its use, but it is likely to become more affordable, the more it is used.

AR is another way that learners can grapple with a subject through 3D modeling and an interactive experience. Accessed through the SmartPhone or tablet, the cost is less prohibitive as well.

AI as well is expected to disrupt the education sector by using algorithms to personalize learning experiences by learning from the student how they interact with learning materials and knowledge. This analysis can assess what individuals or groups of students need in terms of learning input. With its rapid pace of development, one day, AI could be interacting with students itself.

The range of disruptive tech options in education provides an exciting trajectory that we’re already seeing in medicine. More efficient, effective, personalized, and impactful with greater reach, disruptive tech could, in fact, be revolutionary.