Apps for schools - the changing the face of education

There has been a lot of discussion about how fast the world is changing and that schools aren't keeping up.

The majority of schools still sort students by age, not catering for different abilities and the teacher stands at the front and tells them what they "need" to know. 

While that is true from a "structure" perspective there is a change that is being driven from within - from the students, the parents, the teachers etc and mobile is empowering this change. 

This is going to age me but I remember going to my first computer class learning to write

1) "MARY IS A KLUTZ" 

2) RUN LINE 10

3) REPEAT

MARY IS A KLUTZ

MARY IS A KLUTZ

MARY IS A KLUTZ

MARY IS A KLUTZ

or something like that and sitting back with a smug look as my screen filled within line after line of ridiculous comments. Ah, the good old days. 

Nowadays, my kids, at the same age, are using online tools to learn how to build websites or do their maths homework. 

We've taken a look at some of the major areas being addressed by apps for schools and colleges and it is fascinating. 

But first lets look at a bit of background:

1. The speed of mobile adoption is unprecedented

 

  • growing twice as fast as the Internet
  • three times faster than social media and
  • a staggering ten times faster than personal computers.

2. 86% of people prefer apps and it is growing

4. Students are already taking online courses and its growing

(source:http://kevincorbett.com/10-elearning-statistics-2014/)

5. Teachers are seeing the benefits

(source:http://www.intelligenthq.com/education/education-is-going-mobile/)

6. Apps are proliferating in all the areas of teaching content

(Source: http://visual.ly/my-brain-apps-educational-app-stats)

But there is a lot more being done in the field of education and apps for colleges and schools are proliferating.

7. Course builders

These apps in education are designed for students, teachers or administrators trying to pull together a course outline and the material to support it.

8. Physical campus

These cover a whole variety of apps: from navigating the campus; finding new friends; safety; information; schedules; attendance etc.

9. Virtual campus

Much the same but obviously more focused on the virtual components e.g. finding course materials; schedules; finding new friends; information; attendance; accessing teachers

10. Grading and course work

Not having to wait for the big envelope to land on your doorstep when the postman delivers it to get your report or grades. Not sure its better but now you and your parents can access them whenever they are posted, even get alerted. 

Submit and manage your course work through mobile. 

11. Collaboration and interaction

Its an eerie thing to watch a script or code being worked on by multiple people remotely. You can see the content change before your eyes. 

The Book "The Martian" (now a movie with Matt Damon in case you missed it) was actually written online with the author posting it in chapters. His followers/fans apparently contributed to some of the story line as he was writing it - Fan fiction at its best. This will become commonplace in a very short space of time.

12. Mobile Teaching

These are the apps that actually take you through the course work on their own

13. Experience

These are apps that allow to learn more practical skills.e.g. Duolingo: go from a novice to a competent speaker of a language with no other materials required. 

14. References

We still need to look things up as we go e.g. Chinese words or the formula for something

15. Organisers

Getting out to bed, with the right books, having done the right homework is still the same challenge for students that it used to be. The only difference is that now we have some tools to help us manage ourselves. 

16. Study tools

Think of these like the things you would complement your class with e.g. calculators, formula builders, etc

17. Exam taking

The dreaded exams. Now you've got apps to help you revised and to tell how well you really know your stuff. 

 

CONCLUSION:

It shouldn't be a surprise that apps are taking over schools, after all its almost a shocking experience to see a kid without a phone stuck in front of their faces these days.

Apps are everywhere. Is your school or business prepared?

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