Friday, August 3, 2007

2020 Vision

I believe that technology has the capacity to achieve exponential growth by 2020. I foresee several constraints that may limit the rapid expansion of technology. First, the human factor of a person involves the willingness to learn and re-learn new technological advances on a weekly or monthly basis. This will be exhaustive and unrealistic. There of course will always be those people on the cutting edge of technology that will do this but it is probably their full time job. It will become a full time endeavor to keep abreast of the explosion in technology. Secondly, and probably the most important factor is economic or financial constraints. Large companies like Goggle and Microsoft and others will need to spend millions of dollars to build computers, pay peoples’ salaries for writing software, research and design, marketing, etc. that goes into new technology. Will the public be willing to invest their money on new products of technology if the sales cycle is so rapid and a product that is quicker, and more advanced becomes available in the amount of time that the person has just learned the new technology and then needs to spend more money and relearn another new technology? I think people will wait and see what happens before they make the initial investment for new technology especially if it becomes obsolete by the time they learned it or paid off their credit card bill. We’re already seen this happen with computers. The difference would be if you could build upon existing technology and add onto the product or if it is free.

So the question is, will the investment in technology be useless if people/businesses do not purchase it? Without a market demand for it, growth will be controlled. Why does Microsoft and others space out their new technological advances every several years? It seems to be a strategy so that the consumer can afford to pay for them and also have the time to master it. Perhaps the government will fund new technology primarily for fighting terrorism but its side effects will trickle down into the education sector. Government will play a larger role with funding of new technology to schools.

We will come to a point of information overload. Many people are experiencing it already with being wired 24/7, with cell phones, laptops, iPods, etc. Privacy and downtime will become obsolete. There will come a time when technology will be too much for humans to assimilate. We will all need a program or person to manage all of our own personal information.

What will education look like in 2020? In high school and colleges, the overwhelming majority of learning could take place anywhere, anytime as long as the student has a connection to the internet. Learning would be more open and collaborative with other schools in other districts or around the world through blogging, vodcasts, wikis, and other technology. The norm would be that teachers collaborate more with other teachers outside their district or college via blogs, vodcasts, Skype, and other technologies, and incorporate or team up with them regarding new ideas and innovations. The circle of knowledge will be much more expansive than it is now for any one curriculum. The majority of learning would take place online with infrequent class meetings with the instructor during the course. Eventually, I envision “schools without walls” to replace the traditional classroom. All course work would be online- assignments, tests, discussions. The teacher would perform online grading. Routine students’ tools include a laptop, iPod, and goggle notebook.

Teachers will display more of a facilitator role rather than lecturer of new content. Textbooks will gradually be phased out because information will be more up-to-date on the internet or curriculum materials will be online. Students will need to develop skills in prioritizing, time management and organization. Students at an earlier age will become independent learners and assume more responsibility for what they learn. This will require discipline and determination on their part.

For younger students in elementary and middle school, the structure, routine, and socialization of a structured classroom environment would still be evident and necessary. Students will utilize technology such as blogs, wikis, WebQuests, podcasts, etc. at a much younger age than ever before. They will become proficient with these by the time they reach higher level grades. They will routinely use computers for assignments, testing, and research projects. Opportunities for students to learn based upon their learning styles will be accomplished with the various modes of technology.

Changes in education will have a global effect on the world. Professors, scientists, physicians, and other professionals will have the opportunity to share in a global collaborative network. Who knows we may be able to solve many unanswered problems and questions of the human race much faster by bringing together the great minds of the world. Their goal needs to be on serving mankind and not focused on their own accomplishments and pride. This could be an issue because many people want recognition for their work first and the results are actually secondary in nature. The focus of attention needs to shift from “it’s not about me” to it’s about all of us. Great strides can take place if we all put our heads together and work on a common goal.

There will be much more discourse, critical thinking, and creativity at an earlier age. Children may be able to identify their passions for a career sooner in life after exposure to many new ideas and technologies. Children will be teaching their parents about new technology and questioning things more. I also believe that children will be made more accountable and responsible at a younger age because of all the information and knowledge that they will be subjected to. Parents will need to communicate with their children more about what new technologies have been introduced to them in school. If this does not happen, there will be a wide generation gap and very little communication.

How will being a teacher be different in 2020 than it is today? Technology has been paving the way for many years but now it is much faster. For those teachers that are resistant, they will be left in the dust and forced to use new technology. Teachers will need to learn, master and then teach or troubleshoot new technologies that they utilize for their lessons at a faster rate than ever before. There will be less paper and more digitalized work. Many teachers will have to adjust their teaching style to incorporate the new technologies. Greater information technology support will be needed for teachers since they will not be experts at it. The physical load of bringing texts and papers back and forth to class will decrease significantly or be nonexistent due to digitalization. Teachers will have more opportunities to connect with students and parents. Will teachers be preparing students better for the real world? I hope so. It’s important to remember, it’s not about us but it’s about our students and what do they need to be a successful citizen.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

9-A-1 Web Applications Assignment

The goggle notebook would be an application that I would recommend to a student. It has tremendous possibilities for educational research. The applications allow easy linking as well as original URL/websites. The instructor would be able to view the progress of the student's research at anytime by connecting to the internet. It is also feasible for collaboration on a student group project. It saves time for both the student and instructor and allows more flexibility with scheduling.

Monday, July 23, 2007

8-A-1 Assignment Big Shifts

Our college recently had installation of smart classrooms so that I can access the internet in my classroom. I foresee my teaching practice being supplemented by the most current nursing practices available. Administration supports hybrid and online courses and other technology for the nursing program. Students will have opportunities to read blogs about controversial issues in nursing and discuss and publish their ideas. They will also be able to collaborate with other nursing students from around the country and world on various topics. Students in the future will have the opportunity to develop an electronic online portfolio instead of a hard copy version. Collaboration among other nursing programs would become more commonplace. I envision myself becoming more multimedia oriented in the classroom. I believe in the premise that teachers can learn from their students. Students need to be more active participants and responsible for their learning. Nursing lends itself to laying a foundation of core nursing concepts. Students will have assignments to research the most current information about specific nursing topics. They will be expected to participate in discussion groups online and bring forth their real-life experiences to supplement their learning.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

8-B-1 Paperless Spaces

A paperless class would change my role as a teacher to that of a facilitator. I think that I would be guiding their learning process rather than providing content in a lecture format. Students would be more independent learners. I would be posting the reading assignments and tests on the computer more than I presently do. There would be more discussion points among all students rather than the usual few that respond in a regular class. I would have the opportunity to evaluate what the students are learning before they are tested and clarify any issues. I would add a larger percent of their total grade for their participation and discussion points.
Learning would be more independent and self directed. Students would need to have computer and internet access at the minimum. Students would need to be motivated and disciplined in this environment and take responsibility for getting involved in the learning process. They would be more active learners than passive ones. Learning would be more discussion oriented after core material was studied thereby allowing for more indepth analysis and critical thinking exercises. Learning would be more research oriented and allow the student to use more of their senses when learning. It could also determine if students are passionate about a particular subject thereby making a wiser career choice.
Learning could be measured by giving assignments or tests that are graded by the instructor online. A portion of the grade would be based upon specific criteria from a rubric for posting discussion points. It would be easier to build a learning network because students could be more available and flexible with their schedules. There would be more opportunities to network and engage in more indepth discussions with all students in the class rather than a few.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Skype Ideas

I would use Skype to connect with other nursing instructors to collaborate and see what they are doing in their classes and labs. It would work well with observing the patient simulations and labs that are being used at the larger institutions. It would be an opportunity to share information and ask questions.

Another use would be for new instructors to observe how senior professors teach their classes. This would be very beneficial for new instructors that are not yet tenured. Conversely, the new instructor could be observed by the senior professor, the experience critiqued and constructive criticism given to the new faculty member. This could be part of the mentoring program for the new faculty.

Sales personnel could introduce their new products to faculty without ever leaving their company thereby saving time and money.

This one is a bit like reality TV, but consider the possibility of nursing students observing procedures, or grand rounds in a hospital. Of course, you would need safeguards to protect patient confidentiality and obtain the patient’s consent.

It would be very educational to speak with nursing students in foreign countries and learn about their nursing program and studies along with their culture and views on healthcare.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Flickr: Photos from tkaren41

Flickr: Photos from tkaren41

Image citation: (2007, July 9). Desideratum. Retrieved July 9, 2007 from

I could use Flickr in my classroom when I want students to journal, reflect, analyze or involve them in a discussion about photos depicting topics such as aging, death and dying, cultural diversity, communication. This promotes their critical thinking skills and exposes them to different perspectives on the subjects. It also sharpens their writing skills.

Friday, July 6, 2007

5-D-1 Wikis in Classroom

This was my first exposure to wikis. I reviewed and read quite a few of them. The wiki that had the professor outline all of her course on it was incredible. Anyone in the world could have taken this course for free (not receive a grade of course). The Cool Cat wiki was also impressive.
I'm sure that the formatting and layout for the wiki will be most challenging for me. Also I learn better with new technology when I am face to face with another person. It is interesting to work with other's viewpoints and realize their perspective in a group project. From my additional research, it appears that Wikipedia accuracy rates fairly high. I've found myself using it alot to learn more about the terminology with wikis. I was pleasantly surprised at the depth of the explanations. I would not hesitate to continue using it in the future.