How The Internet Of Things Can Help Online Learning

Experts are discussing how the Internet of Things can help teach kids online skills.

How The Internet Of Things Can Help Online Learning

Our growing overuse of digital devices has gone hand in hand with declining attention spans. A study from Carnegie Mellon found students have an average attention span of under four minutes. This has affected the way we spend our time and our attitudes about education. In many ways, it’s been mirrored on the college level with 100% of students now using online classes to fill in the blanks for their course work.

As student dropout rates hover at near historic lows, it’s become clear we need to find creative ways to expand the relevance of our education with digital, on-demand courses. Schools are finding ways to offer online courses by following the constantly growing IoT movement.

From smart speakers to thermostats, internet connected devices are increasingly bringing the internet of things to the classroom. With IoT, all the complex pieces from industrial equipment to household appliances work together to make our lives better. Of course, connecting these devices means increasing our security and connectivity and even bringing greater convenience to our lives.

Now schools can have the best of both worlds – growing student and faculty connectivity while providing flexible scheduling options. The IoT revolution will give students and faculty more information on their devices to keep them informed and connected throughout the day. As IoT continues to gain popularity, schools can further tap into this trend to make the classroom more attractive.

Developing The IoT Will Help Online Learning

The “internet of things” is a growing set of internet connected devices; everything from fridges to thermostats can be connected with the internet. The IoT’s increasing popularity has been part of the reason why organizations have been embracing the idea of a connected classroom. The IoT offers the ability to supplement current instructional methods and help students stay on top of their studies. By communicating with students’ devices in real time, instructors can provide individualized attention and a streamlined pace.

This new technique is the result of collaboration between many organizations including the World Economic Forum and Crayola. In their study, Crayola found that teaching and learning can benefit when students have the ability to interact with their devices throughout the day.

This isn’t a new concept – we’ve already seen massive open online courses (MOOCs) evolve this concept. When the first MOOCs popped up in 2012, MOOCs weren’t many devices (besides a laptop and a webcam) but they helped increase quality online learning. Now, that same concept is being expanded and on-demand learning will soon become a reality.

The IoT expands the number of connections that students and instructors have in the classroom. One of the biggest problems for online courses is that students tend to read online and skim. They need access to information in real time, so teachers can hold students up to account and make sure they are hitting the books. Meanwhile, the IoT benefits teachers by enabling them to have more hands-on experiences in the classroom. With this type of increased flexibility, instructors can enable online learning to focus on a certain subject, and adjust the pace of their lesson based on their students’ levels.

The IoT Will Lower The Costs Of Online Education

Although online courses cost more than traditional classroom attendance, IoT is exactly what we need to help bring down costs. In a recent study by Degree Pulse, 49% of respondents said they couldn’t afford to take another online class, and 44% would do it for free. That means 44% of online students would rather save money by turning to low-quality content than take a college course.

With IoT, schools are putting more digital content into the classroom. With more interesting content, students and instructors can feel more confident in their content to pass. This puts less money into the hands of the colleges themselves and frees up more of that money to be spent on real faculty members.

Our Society Is Stretched Thin

We are in a time where the potential for technology to make a positive impact in the world is astounding. From our concern about falling unemployment and inequality to rising medication costs, technology holds many opportunities to make society a better place.

Today, I am encouraged by the prospect of IoT connecting the world of the internet of things. Just as the internet enabled our life to be optimized through its incredible connectivity, IoT can take the lessons and technologies to help other industries–such as education–provide better opportunities for our students.

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