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The New Age of Learning: Technology and Education in Cooperation

            Getting smarter is a necessity in modern life for which a proper education is required. Given the developments observed in technology, the changes in the educational systems of the world have become quite promising, making it easier for people to access and utilize knowledge. Online institutions are offering degrees to anyone with access to internet and an ambition to learn, while project management certifications like TOGAF are helping professionals add more credentials to their resumes. Education is always an ongoing process and therefore paying attention to new issues, methods and processes in the given field is important for people to proceed with their plans. Education technology has become a mainstream issue, connecting the dots between the existing modules and enabling individuals to achieve higher levels of success with their educational efforts and in turn, with their professional careers.

            It is not only the students who benefit from technological advancements but also the teachers who utilize new technologies to help them with their teaching methods. Twitter and Facebook are frequently used by such innovative educators as the social media applications enable them to directly contact their students and make announcements. In the traditional system, students and teachers were separated due to time constraints and physical realities, whereas social media keeps them connected almost at all times. In addition, teacher blogs have become popular over time, where educators share their ideas about issues or provide their students and followers with resources. The Top Global Teacher Bloggers is a popular monthly series among such teachers who utilize the occasion to communicate with each other. Anything and everything, ranging from education costs to student behavior, from political developments to weather conditions are debated by the teachers, to give them an idea about actualities. The digital tool also enables teachers from other countries to be able to connect to a global network, eradicating the physical boundaries in the process.

            The tech giants such as Google, Apple and Microsoft are battling over schools currently, as the introduction of affordable laptops, tablets and software into the classrooms has created a vast business sector within itself. Google has already attained significant success with its trademark Chromebooks in recent years, offering the devices as low as $199, which has incentivized Microsoft to come up with a newer and more affordable model of its Surface laptop, equipped with a special Windows 10 operating system, designed for schoolchildren. The competition is high as the Chromebooks make up 58% of all the 12.6 million mobile PCs and tablets currently in use by students. Google’s vast technical infrastructure is also an advantage for such students because it is significantly easier with the Chromebook’s software and operating system to be able to connect to other devices or networks. Microsoft’s move against such dominance was to develop the new Windows 10S, which provides significant ease of use for teachers, enabling them to download a variety of applications through the Windows Store, including ‘Classroom’, which is an application, used to manage multiple devices at once.   

            Although smartphones are considered to be useful for learning by the majority of the people, there are parents who complain about their kids’ dependence on the gadgets, claiming that their children spend too much time fiddling with useless applications. Apple has taken notice of the situation and developed the ‘Screen Time’ application which allows parents to monitor their kids’ iPhone and iPad usage times and also set limits on the durations of use for a variety of different applications. The application is one of the highlights of the new Apple mobile operating system, iOS 12, enabling parents to take control over their children’s use of mobile devices. This way, the parents will be able to divert their children’s attention away from these devices and towards their study materials. The parental control is also supplemented by a newly launched ‘Families’ webpage where the parents can learn about other applications and features used to manage their children’s content. The idea is to minimize the time the children spend on social media and other counter-productive applications, in order to increase the efficiency of their use of such devices and hopefully lead such children to use them for educational purposes.