So, taking my crystal ball, what do I see the trends being in elearning, technology, and higher ed/training in general? These are based on my observations in the classroom, my own children's technology habits and what is happening in their classrooms, and my own research.
- Mobile technology (including ebooks, smart phones, and smartbooks) will continue to grown and make learning mobile. In the US, if the transportation plans come to fruition, commuters will spend commuting time learning. This might already be happening in other parts of the world.
- If wifi and 3g technologies are expanded enough, learners will be able to access learning tools anywhere. As a result, learning will take place outside of traditional classrooms, with less face to face time in the classroom and more individualized learning plans. However, the classroom will continue to be the location for assessment. This means there will be a shift for educators from being the source of learning to being the assessor of learning. Universities will still be the source of research (at least in the US) but the location of the research will expand as there is more incentive to work with businesses in developing research that is economically viable.
- In the US (and I think other countries as well), there will be a push for universal standards at the University level to be maintained through technology based assessment tools. The current K-12 standards based education has developed a student that requires structure for learning and assessment. (Disclaimer: I don't think this will be good for education, but I feel the pressure in my own teaching these days).
- There will be a shift from learning about various tools to learning how to use different classifications of tools to acheive results. There will also be demand to find new apps and tools through a central location. An apps search engine will probably come into popularity at some point in the next few years. For example, need to find a note taking software that can be used on a Mac for academic purposes? Go to the Apps search engine and input the parameters.
- Video will become more important, especially subtitled video. Why subtitled? Because users can access the images and read the information without others in a room knowing they are accessing the internet/video. This currently happens with texting. Being able to have an instant subtitled video or attaching comments to the video means that the image can be shared privately in public spaces.
- Learning, business, customer service, and societal values will be customized. Businesses and educators will need to offer options that allow choice by users. (See my earlier post).
Ken Allen (He already made his predictions and inspired this post)