Both technological development and device innovation are happening at an unbelievable pace. I believe that this eventually will lead to the world outside and inside the classroom being brought together.
Multimedia brought the world into the classroom… Smart technologies will take the classroom into the world.Steve Wheeler, 2011
Mobile learning in 2030
In 2030 high-speed internet access, voice recognition, cloud-based information sharing, AR technology (and holographic, 3D, VR), GPS, location-based learning, and cross-platform capabilities (same apps regardless of the operating system) will change and serve mobile learning in many ways. This, combined with modern batteries (with extreme capacity), will give way to many new (or enhanced) ways of learning.
The social-constructivism of Vygotsky (and others) and connectivism (Siemens, 2014, p. 5) will be the natural way to learn. The students will not be limited to consuming information in a passive way. They will also produce and share information regardless of where they are. How and where you find information will perhaps be more important than what you already know.
Improve learning skills
All this evolution will change both the curriculum (if there will be such a thing) and many of the ways we learn new things. How and what we learn will be very different from today. In addition to and, sometimes, instead of what we learn in schools today, there will be more focus on:
- How to handle «information overload»
- How to avoid «echo chambers»
- How to find reliable and valid sources
- How to take care of your privacy
- How to present yourself online
- How to communicate with peers through social networks
In 2030 the students, and even pupils in primary and secondary schools, will be able to set their own learning goals, plan and manage their own learning, and communicate with their peers and teachers about their progress. What will be the teacher’s role in this? Master, mentor, facilitator, coach, manager, evaluator? According to Steve Wheeler (2011), we can only create the «conducive enviroments within which students will organize their own learning». Self-organized Learning (SOL) and personal learning environments (PLE) are some of the exciting prospects for the future.
The lack of critical engagement by a tutor – on top of the diminishing level of control by the institution – implicates a high level of learner autonomy.Dowes et al., 2013, p. 10
This is, of course, important for the student’s motivation, as Ryan and Deci have shown in their SDT. However, this might also be a challenge in grammar school and secondary school, at least as long as many teachers still believe that school is all about the educational institution giving information and knowledge to the pupils/students.
But, as Steve Wheeler (2011) mentions, the modern teacher will have far more exciting tasks than the one Freire (1970/2000, p. 79) notes in «Pedagogy of the Oppressed»:
In the banking concept of education, knowledge is a gift bestowed by those who consider themselves knowledgeable upon those whom they consider to know nothing.Paulo Freire, 1979/2000, p. 79
Wheeler (2011) lists the following tasks for the modern educator:
- Content curation
- Learning support
The teachers will also play an important part in assessing the learning. Still, we may see a shift from criteria-based evaluation to an ipsative way of assessing progress (Hughes, 2011, p. 353).
- Downes, S., Bernard, R., Mzungu, A. C., Sanare, R., Foroughi, A., Noffs, D. S., … Careas, S. (2013). Connectivism: Learning theory of the future or vestige of the past? International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 9(3), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781107415324.004
- Freire, P. (1970/2000). Pedagogy of the Oppressed. (M. B. Ramos, Overs.) New York: The Continuum International Publishing Group Inc.
- Hughes, G. (2011). Towards a personal best: A case for introducing ipsative assessment in higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 36(3), 353–367. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2010.486859
- Siemens, G. (2014). Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning, 1, 1–8. https://doi.org/10.1.1.87.3793
- Wheeler, Steve. (2011, ) Learning and teaching in the digital age, 8th International Teacher Training Seminar, Barcelona, Spain. https://www.slideshare.net/uocunescochair/learning-and-teaching-in-the-digital-age-by-steve-wheeler