These are heady days for education technology. In fact, with big investments in outfits like Everspring and Udemy, I’d say 2014 was the biggest year yet in edtech. However, if you thought that was impressive, you haven’t seen anything yet. What does 2015 hold for the year in this fast-moving sector?
Technology Will Get Embedded
Of course, classrooms have been using computers for decades, but 2014 was a year when many schools began to adopt technology as an embedded, natural part of teaching and learning. As many schools have tried out these products and services, teachers and pupils alike have whetted their appetites with early glimpses at the possibilities.
Next year is when institutions will consolidate their positions and settle on solutions for adoption in the years ahead. As this happens, technology will become an intrinsic part of the learning process rather than an afterthought.
Cloud Will Come Into Its Own
Adoption of cloud-based technologies is booming. But education lags behind other industries in embracing the opportunity. This year, educators will finally start to really take advantage of the possibilities, e.g. storing documents and managing webmail, as well as more classroom-specific services including cloud-based learning management systems.The more that schools are allowed to manage their own budgets, and the more that local governments themselves look to cut costs, the more schools will move toward cloud solutions. This can significantly reduce spending and allow schools to focus on teaching rather than technology.
Expectations Will Increase
Now that many educators have begun to use connected classroom technologies, their demand for ever-more sophisticated solutions will blossom.
Indeed, many teachers are now used to using highly effective but easy-to-manage web tools in their personal lives. In the year ahead, they will bang the drum for similar adoption at school, not wanting to settle for shoehorning an education imperative in to off-the-shelf consumer products.
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