Evolution and Future of Digital Learning

Ila Avinash, Summer Intern

In recent years, technology has exponentially advanced beyond automobiles or basic electricity in cities. It has permeated every aspect of our modern world, forcing today’s society—regardless of age, race, nationality, etc.—to adapt accordingly. Younger generations have been raised in a technology-based world, one where children are owning iPads by the age of 5 in order to play on apps designed with kid-friendly games and videos. Tangible toys have been replaced with video game consoles. Playing in the backyard has been interchanged with going to the arcade. The education sector is no exception to this.

The push for education to adapt to these trends in students has reflected in a shift of what “traditional learning” once looked like. Rigid classroom settings are taking to the internet to incorporate technology into their lessons, or even become substituted with an online format. Suddenly, the boundaries of where and when learning can take place are eliminated, replaced with mobile and constant access to online learning. To maintain an outdated form of learning quickly becomes uninspiring to students, who are consistently “plugged-in” some way or another.

Introducing a more dynamic way of teaching in schools and universities can open up different paths for student learning, providing more innovative lectures or allowing students to demonstrate their knowledge of content in an infinite amount of creative ways.

Professors at universities, such as the University of California- San Diego, have utilized digitized learning in order to “flip” their classrooms—providing video lectures and assignments outside of class and using class time to ask questions and become actively engaged in comprehending the material they’ve learned outside. Not only is it efficiently helping students when structured and executed effectively, but it also allows faculty to expand their classrooms beyond four walls.

Digital learning and technology have evolved in a way that can help create a framework for how content is taught, processed, and applied in the future. From video-recorded lectures to online universities, an educational foundation that utilizes this tech early on is only going to bolster future success in the corporate world. Employers are now seeking graduates who show exemplary skill in using technology to communicate and collaborate efficiently internally as well as with external clients.

However, the transformation from traditional to digital learning is not necessarily based on technology. It relies on the willingness of society to grow and adopt new ways to teach what cannot be learned in a traditional classroom setting. This process is a continual one and shows no signs of slowing down any time soon.