Technology can bring education to all

January 29, 2018 12:00 AM
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Education is a key social barometer, it elevates individuals into a better understanding of the world and aids in creating a smarter way of life.

Despite efforts from around the world, a significant percentage of the global population still remains in the chains of illiteracy. The factors behind this are many, like minimal resources for teaching, low accessibility to remote areas, low-income, discrimination etc. Demography wise, women are more in the undereducated/uneducated segment as compared to men.

Thousands of NGOs are now working towards bringing literacy to underprivileged around the world. However, the reach of such initiatives and its efficacy of results are still questionable. We see the use of technology transforming various dimensions of our lives. Perhaps the use of technology in global literacy initiatives is the answer. We explore this a little further in this article.

Education technologies for remote areas

Over the last decade, there have been efforts in implanting technology into literacy initiatives  - but the results are inadequate. Yet slowly, the rise of advanced technologies and their practical applications are giving hope to people. The internet aids in assessing, analyzing, and answering questions of millions of inquisitive minds. The use of this medium furthers efforts towards global literacy.

Advanced technologies like Virtual reality, Collaboration platforms, Augmented reality and Artificial Intelligence is at forefront of the technology aided literacy initiatives around the globe. 

Virtual Reality:

Virtual Reality (VR) is a technology which enables detailed information and the cloud computing help access to resources remotely. Up until now, VR had made an exquisite impact in the field of gaming and entertainment. Experts say methods of education will soon evolve with the help of VR.

This technology is not only economical to implement, the content can retain attention and make learning experience very realistic. NGOs can use VR to reach classrooms in remote areas and take knowledge to socially secluded groups. There are plenty of VR tools built already and implemented in higher education. 

Augmented Reality:

Augmented Reality is similar to Virtual Reality at the basic concept level, yet different in terms of experience rendered. Incorporating AR into education will add more flexibility to educational resources. The major problem in providing education remotely is understanding  ‘How clearly learners grasp the concepts taught?’ - with AR, this problem can be addressed to a large extent.

Simply put, through AR, users are subject to a computer-generated image superimposed with his/her view of the real world. In the process of education, this detailed experience can create a wider understanding of lessons while increasing the general interest to learn. 

Artificial intelligence:

Artificial Intelligence (AI) could potentially be a significant step towards the future of education. It could help set up, permit, and facilitate various resources and advancements in the learning. Various models to build an unambiguous education system that can influence its learners can be structured by an AI-powered solution. The use Artificial intelligence in education can make the learning standards praiseworthy.

Artificial intelligence can learn the patterns of knowledge involved in building a system with which it can create solutions in real-time. With the help of intelligent tools like Personal Assistants, Intelligent Teaching Assistants etc; the lack of qualified education professionals can be bridged. This technology also solves the issues involved in field-level implementation. 

Collaboration Platforms:

To execute a learning platform remotely, collaboration platforms becomes as important as the learning platform. Collaboration platforms help learners get the feel of a classroom - online. It can aid in creating the competitive edge typically present among peer groups of students. This will help students tackle assignments and accomplish education-related tasks on their own initiative. Collaboration tasks can be built using Internet-of-Things, Cloud Computing and Blockchain.

Internet-of-Things can help organizers track real-time status of every individual learner. The learners can take help of IOT tools to get solutions to doubts. Whereas, Cloud computing helps to store the data remotely about the learners and statistics of the organization. It also helps in building apps and using them for various activities like publishing, solving doubts, forums etc. Blockchain helps in taking feedbacks from various individuals that cannot be altered/modified.

It can be easily seen that the effective use of technology will bring positive changes in the efforts towards wiping out illiteracy. Taking education remotely to rural and marginal areas can help millions of people taste the sweetness of knowledge.

‘Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom’, George Washington Carver. 

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