If you’ve been following new trends, you’ve likely heard of IoT education (or perhaps Internet of Things education). The online education industry has been really pushing for its use in classrooms, and the Internet of Things has made its way into the lives of more and more people throughout the world. But what is the IoT? What can it offer to students, whether in college or below? What does it mean to the academic world? We’ve looked into it and found the answers to these questions.
What is IoT?
To put it simply, the Internet of Things is a way for different devices to “talk” or communicate with one another. For example, machines knowing that someone has looked up where to find research papers for sale communicate to another machine that can keep track of that information. However, it goes beyond knowing if someone wants to find a research paper that is on sale. It turns particular tasks, such as data collecting (as with the example here), into completely autonomous tasks.
The Internet of Things can help students and teachers stay connected. This is true, no matter where you are in the world. Instead of having to wait until the next school day to meet with your teacher when you have a question, now you can simply use a plethora of programs offered to keep in contact with them or the rest of your class. Whether you need help with a research paper for English, don’t understand what APA means, or need help with history, it’s all there online.
Keeping Things Secure
Security is one of the biggest concerns in education. Knowing where students are and what they’re doing is at the forefront of almost every staff member’s mind at all times. Other than buy top-notch security systems, what else can they do? Well, the IoT has that under control. There are ways that you can keep track of students using the Internet of Things, such as using trackers with RFID chips. There are many other opportunities that it can be used for to keep everyone safe.
Going Beyond Books
If you’ve ever had to endure the wait for college textbooks (particularly those on sale), then you’re likely already aware that they’re a changing breed. Instead of just being the textbook, now the purchase also comes with access codes to different websites to assist with your academics. These make it easier to complete homework, study, and even put together your notes. Though some aren’t happy with the price tag that comes with them, others enjoy using this new technology. This is mostly for the college crowd, but other schools are bringing it in as well.
Helping the Disabled
Yes, it can even be used to help those with special needs! One of the newest ways that it’s being used is to translate sign language into properly written English. This will make it easier for those who rely upon it (such as deaf, hard-of-hearing, or mute students). For some, this may mean a return to normal classrooms with their peers, rather than those that are only for people with special needs.
Custom classes are something that is often advocated for but never actually done. That’s because, in a traditional classroom, asking teachers to change their curriculum to suit each individual is too much. However, with the Internet of Things, machines can do this for them. Computers can analyze the problems that students are having, and focus more on those, rather than drill them on things they know well. This flexibility may mean that students that would otherwise slip through the cracks will get the help and attention that they need to succeed in school.
Monitoring the Classroom
Whether it’s just attendance or keeping track of those who participate better, IoT is useful in monitoring the classroom. This takes another burden off of a teacher’s shoulders. Now, they don’t have to worry about collecting or grading homework; checking attendance, and a slew of other things that took up a vast majority of their time. Instead, they can focus on what they’re supposed to be doing: Teaching. By making everything else automatic, more teachers will have the time to devote to their students.
What sort of hands-on learning? The kind that matters the most in the modern world: Machine. Learning how to use computers and other new devices is as essential today as knowing how to write in cursive was years ago. Since our world is embracing this technology, it only makes sense that children should be taught on a regular basis. Having this hands-on experience can be a good thing, particularly as they become older and go to college or enter the workforce.
Potential Downsides to IoT
Of course, there are potential downsides to the Internet of Things being brought into the classroom. The first major concern is privacy. As many of those who use the internet on a regular basis are aware, privacy can be quite relative. Your information is not always as safe as you might think, and having the data taken from students or stolen can be a nightmare just waiting to happen. Another problem is the divide between those that have access to the Internet of Things and those that don’t. There are many places in the world, and even in most developed countries, where such a thing just isn’t feasible in any school. One of the top reasons? Funding. Technology such as this can be expensive, and some schools simply aren’t up to the challenge of finding the money for it.
The Internet of Things has a lot to offer to those who are in school, no matter the level of education. Though there are downsides, the positives are worth considering. The IoT can drag education into the 21st century.