Over time, Information Technology has become a major part of our existence. There is hardly any aspect of our lives which doesn’t have a correspondence with IT, be it our modes of Communication (mobile phones, social media etc.), in Education (computers, projectors, presentations etc.) or even in Business, Banking etc. Focusing our attention on education then, a drastic change is seen to have occurred in the aspect of Technology.
We could begin by taking a little trip down memory lane, as far back as the end of the 18th Century when students were still using individual slates made of actual slate or wood. By 1801 however, due to the inefficiency of the individual slates, James Pilans invented the first modern blackboard when he hung a large piece of slate on the classroom wall. These were used up until the 1960’s when the ‘green board’ was introduced and then the 1980’s/1990’s when the ‘whiteboard’ was then the most popular and efficient inventions of its sort. Now coming back to reality, these boards are still being used but alongside other forms of technology. One of these is the Interactive Whiteboard aka Smartboard. They allow teachers to present lectures with ‘touch-screen’ technology surf the web, draw on the boards etc. Also, most things are now seen to be done online with the digtisation of books, education app stores amongst others. Blackboard is another interesting platform which is popular in Higher Education Institutions. It is an online resource for both lecturers and students which contains valuable information from and for the lectures and otherwise. This can be accessed on a wide range of devices from computers to mobile devices.
At this point, it would only be proper to look into the future and see what IT has in store for us. Assumptions? Predictions? Hopes? One thing is certain, there isn’t one specific thing to look forward to with regards IT and education. We envision domination with regards mobile learning and this would be the complete IT takeover. There would be a major reduction in classroom sessions and more on the virtual platform. This would involve an increase in the Student to Student teaching platforms where students would be able to lend a helping hand to one another irrespective of their locations. Also, telepresence where they would be able to communicate with the feeling of a real-life experience and make communication more accurate. IT within the education sector is very much an unexploited area, only the future will tell what it holds.