Technology — Then and Now

There’s a difference in how technology & devices were viewed 7 years ago compared to how they’re embraced now.

Technology has come a long way, in a short space of time. It was less than 10 years ago that the first iPhone was created and the World Wide Web was first thought up in 1989. This rapid change means that technology has impacted hugely on the way we teach and are taught, and it’s interesting to look at just how far technology has come since I was at school, and I'm only 22!

Take mobile phones for example, when I was at school, iPhone's were far and few between, instead students were rocking an LG Chocolate, Blackberry or Motorola Razor. There were no such apps that would enhance your learning, oh no, these were purely for texting and maybe taking photos — If you were lucky!

And god forbid you took your phone out in class — that would be confiscated in an instant (we still did old school note passing to ask who each other fancied). But today, phones are embraced, you’re encouraged to research and download apps that can help you keep track of your homework and test your knowledge. We even ask our students to bring their tablets and phones into class to create a more collaborative environment.

“Vintage Camera 1” (CC BY 2.0) by free batjko

Much like laptops and tablets — for starters I don’t think tablets were invented when I was still at school and throughout my entire time in education prior to University, I maybe bought a laptop into school with me twice, and I'm not even sure why. Lessons were strictly pen and paper, coursework was handwritten, typed up at a later date and email was wasn't a concept I was familiar with. Today, having a laptop used in lessons means that research is quick and easy and resources are available in abundance.

Perhaps the biggest change though, is how phones, tablets and laptops are now used as a tool for learning. Despite not being as advanced when I was a teenager didn't mean I was glued to a screen anyless, I was constantly texting or on my laptop. There was a clear distinction between the utensils I used in school and what I used at home.

Today, this line is blurred, and the ability to use tablets in class and at home, to complete homework, conduct research or write assignments means that students today have access to learning everywhere. Be that on an app or by having the relevant work with them to continue and add to. This integration of technology into our classrooms only helps to improve the ways in which our students learn and gives them the possibility of continuing their studies, without effort, outside of the class.

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