PROMOTING ICT SKILLS IN CLASSROOMS
Technology has an immense power influence everywhere in the world today. Information and Communications Technology (ICT) refers to an infrastructural change that enables modern computing. ICT is a broader concept which interlinks communication and interaction of the digital world through various sources; applications, devices and systems. ICT is not limited to one technology, it includes cloud computing, software, hardware, communications technology and internet access including wireless connections.
Advancements in the curriculum and teaching standards has led to adopting a digital classroom environment instead of an analogue classroom. Most teachers use computers to access the internet in the classrooms. This practice had led to advanced information sharing between the teachers and students. Students use PCs, Tablets, Laptops, e-books, etc to learn. Often these devices are provided by the institutions to aid learning. Most universities take online assessments, quizzes, share lectures through online portals which makes it easier for students to refer to the concepts being taught. Classroom standards are maintained to allow for digital access and audio/visual teaching methods. According to various feedback taken from students during teacher evaluation at all levels; students better understand the practical application of concepts through examples that cover visual representation in form of presentations and videos.
Reasons why students need technology in the classroom
- If not misused, devices and their applications can provide career support to students at an early stage.
- Incorporating technology in learning will highlight the skills and capabilities of students and help teachers to connect with them.
- Collaboration enhances interaction in the classroom.
- Using technology and effective utilisation of technology are poles apart. Getting hands-on devices in the classroom gives teachers an opportunity to teach and develop different skills in their students. This in turn helps them to use technology responsibly and also understand the ethical boundaries of using devices neglected by the majority.
- Students nowadays find it easy to access information online. By adopting their style of learning, teachers can engage students and logically align the class.
- Information is available with one click.
- Teacher’s role as an advisor or coach increases.
- Students start taking responsibility for their valuables, whether be their own devices or school-owned.
Additional costs associated with the use of technology in classrooms:
The challenging task of adopting a new system is to adjust to its requirements. Not only do you need to invest on gadgets, to utilise their full potential you need a strong wireless connection that supports a vast network. Your Wi-Fi system needs to align with the available devices, and it needs to support any technology plan the school wishes to implement.
The second most important concern of the management is their budget. Wi-Fi plan, connection and installation are a bit costly whereas your expectations with the plan are much higher. In this case, the management needs to devise a successful plan which is easy on the pockets but at the same time provides the required efficiency as well.
Moreover, Wi-Fi as a service has affordable monthly payments, guarantees the latest system and allows schools to budget over time exactly what type of service the school, students and staff demands.
Technology – Preparation for the future
Technology changes from time to time but it also shapes us in the future. When we include technology in our education we take time to learn about each element of ed-tech used in classrooms. Using technology prepares us for the next big thing to come. Our career path is very sensitive, the greater the skills set we adopt the more successful we get. Ed-tech shapes our personality, it enables us to use complex technology and opens up opportunities for diverse career options. Technology helps students retain information better; because learning isn’t about memorising, it’s how you apply what you learn every day.
Impact of ICT on teacher
Often people confuse teachers’ roles with the use of ICT. Traditional teacher mentorship and leadership remain constant throughout classroom learning. Teachers are central to the learning process since they look after and design the curriculum, plan lessons and introduce technology to the students. ICT helps teachers create a more learner-centric environment. It isn’t a complete teaching process but simply a part of the classroom infrastructure. Teachers tend to benefit from ICT training, it adds to their skills and abilities. Time management is crucial, therefore ICT helps students learn better.
However, introducing ICT will require expert training. Technology isn’t suitable for all audiences, especially where teaching standards are still developing. It takes a lot of preparation time to effectively address different types of audiences when using e-learning. It also brings a new set of administrative requirements catering to parental concerns, policy statements, and training and evaluation criteria.