For over a decade, the New Media Consortium (NMC) has been charting the landscape of emerging technologies in teaching, learning, and creative inquiry on a global scale.
The NMC’s advisory board includes 750 technology experts and faculty members from colleges and universities in 40 countries, and is supported by the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE).
The NMC’s latest research efforts, the NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition and the NMC Horizon Report: 2013 Higher Education Edition, were released this spring, and together highlight ten emerging technologies that will impact education over the course of the next five years: cloud computing, mobile learning, learning analytics, open content, 3D printing, MOOCs, virtual and remote laboratories, games and gamification, tablet computing, and wearable technology.
As an educator, you have probably heard about many of these technologies, if not all of them. But the Horizon Report project pushes the discussion into fresh territory, predicting a time frame for their implementation into mainstream education and presenting an impressive list of institutions and individuals who are already using them in every discipline imaginable.
Too often it is education’s own practices that limit the broader uptake of new technologies. Whether it’s insufficient ongoing professional development or the reluctance to accept the need for digital media literacy, significant challenges stand in the way of smooth assimilation.
What the Horizon reports show, however—even more than which technologies are rising to the top— is that smooth assimilation is possible, and that countless educators are making the move creatively and with admirable conviction.
Here is a little inspiration from the people who are doing it right:
1. Cloud Computing (12 Months or Less)
In 2011, cloud computing was listed in the 12-month-or-less category of the report, primarily because of the way it had become an essential part of collaboration in both schools and the workplace. This year, the placement of cloud computing on the near-term horizon for a second time underscores the fact that the impact of this technology continues to unfold in new and expanding ways.
Language: The cloud-based Brazilian Electronic Learning Organizer helps language teachers produce and share digital learning objects and activities for their students. The learning objects are created by the teacher or assembled from a resource repository created by other teachers in the network. Continue reading