Educational trends in the 21st century
Trends include the role of the teacher, followed by technology adaptation and how technology benefits pupils’ learning and development. In the 20th century, one of the most important roles for the teacher was to provide knowledge and content; this was mostly a hidden “commodity” found in printed books and in the mind of the teacher. Today, in the 21st century, knowledge is available online, and with new advanced technology the opportunities and requirements of learning has changed drastically. Pupils can often feel overwhelmed by information and they often feel an increased pressure to perform outstanding in every single moment of their studies. Therefore, a teacher's job is not primarily to hold and distribute knowledge but instead, to focus on facilitation, motivation, as well as, to monitor and manage pupils' learning and development. Another vital task for teachers in the 21st century is to set goals with the pupils, to serve as role models by showing private success stories, and to counsel and guide them to better decision making. A 21st century teacher adds value by suggesting specific tasks, information, articles and text books depending on each student's needs, learning capability and study pace. A 21st century teacher adds value by ensuring that most suitable information and technology are used by pupils to maximize their learning and minimize early drop-outs. In the 21st century, pupils need to understand how to find appropriate information, how to critically evaluate data and how to apply taught methodologies and concepts. This, to reach an expected outcome, within a certain time frame, and according to predefined quality criteria. This is vital, because the industry expects these personal characteristics from graduates.
A second big trend is the use of technology and appropriate use of technology can minimize pupil's study burden and stress factor while maximizing the learning potential. The elimination of printed textbooks and the implementation of digital curricula are becoming more important when seeking effective and efficient learning practices. Tools such as Endomondo and Google classroom enable effective sharing of assignments, due dates, and classroom announcements. Similar tools make it easy to find and distribute online educational content, to create groups, assign homework and schedule quizzes. Textbooks, digital resources, and assessments are integrated to give tailored exercises and personalized knowledge, depending on pupil’s needs at any given point in time. Cloud computing is one of IBMs’ core pillars and this technology makes it possible for pupils to access assignments, curricula, readings and support material digitally regardless of time and location. Suggested tools include Dropbox, Google drive and Amazon cloud. Pupils collaborate, share files and interact virtually which makes the intake and transformation of new information less cumbersome and more productive. Another growing in popularity phenomena is the “BYOD”; bring your own device. Besides cost benefits for the business, pupils can use their own devices such as tablet, smartphone or laptop to access and complete tasks at their convenience.
A 21st century modern, and attractive educational institute needs to provide areas of studies that reflect present and future industry demand. Tailored, and industry specific knowledge is the foundation for a pupils’ ability to thrive and succeed in future careers. At present, many corporations are forced to shut down operations or move overseas as a result of not finding suitable skills; K12 international schools in the 21st century shall therefore awake curiosity and provide knowledge and the “know-how” in areas sought by the industry. In my previous industry experience in roles such as: project executive, business manager and lecturer, I got to understand where the demand of jobs will be in the future. These include but not limited to: biotechnology, biomedicine, robotics, artificial intelligence, big data, analytics, internet of things, IT security, agile leadership, digital leadership, digital client management, Java programming, cloud engineering, and 5G systems integration. Additional areas are creative art, digital designers, and psychologists; the latter require the human spirit and human feelings which are more difficult for a robot to replicate. A highly attractive and valuable 21st century international educational institute therefore needs to reflect future industry demand in its curricula for pupils who seek to become successful university students with advanced research skills and knowledge that are useful when applying for future jobs.
Anthony Marc / Director of Admissions
(C) 2018. Anthony Marc, Papadimitriou & Partners. All rights reserved.
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