The hype and trends of technology

With technology becoming more pervasive in our everyday lives and being prevalent in classrooms it is interesting to stop and take stock and reflect on technology trends from the past to inform us on what worked well and what didn’t. By reflecting on this I believe that I can fix my sight on the future and move forward with knowledge.

Let’s look at the facts that not that long ago it was standard modern practice to use acetate overhead project sheets and Gestetner copies.

It is always the risk, should you be an early adopter of a technology on the forefront trying to work out how to fit it into a class, or should you sit back and wait for it to become mainstream and are forced to use it because your organisation has created a user policy. The key question to ask, as an educator is; Why should we use technology in the classroom? (Drager, 1, 2015)

As a teacher it is always important to think about the affordances to technology that you are considering implementing in the class. Bower (2008) outlined an affordance classification system, that is incredible useful to work through when deciding on technology for the classroom, a process I went through for the Moodle Learning Management System (Drager, 2, 2015).

As a trainer when I go to use a new technology I will put it through an affordance review and also reflect on my own TPACK (Drager,3, 2015) with the technology to ensure that I am not just using a trendy new technology for the sake of it but there are solid links to curriculum.

Reflecting on technology trends from the past 10 years has been an interesting undertaking, especially in relation to what I personally used in education. It is interesting that though LMSs have been around for over 15 years that they still remain a critical part of the e-learning landscape, but the question is for how long (Conole, 2012)? I can map how I have taught by the technology that I used personally. Some key highlights from the years include:

  • 2006 learning to develop web content for my Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) which opened up an awareness of digital creation and curation.
  • 2007 the year of Virtual Worlds and social networks, with exciting projects such as ‘Virtual World’s – Real Learning’ from the then Australian Flexible Learning Framework inspiring people from the VET sector which opened up a huge new realm for me.
  • 2010, mobile media tablets changed workplace training due to the simplicity of use and ease of integration.

Gartner every year puts out a Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies. 2014 shows types of technology that have been around for a while but appear simply because they’ve gained mainstream attention, such as gamification.

Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2014 (Gartner, 2014)
Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2014 (Gartner, 2014)
Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2012 (Gartner, 2012)
Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2012 (Gartner, 2012)

The Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies should be studied with a critical eye own in relation to education but linked to other important reports such as the Horizon Report to identify critical trends that will indeed support teaching and learning. When you compare 2012 to 2014 Hype Cycles you are able to see that BYOD was at its zenith in 2012, but does not even rate a mention in 2014. What does this mean to us in education and the trends in technology? Simply if there’s enough ‘hype’ around technology it can very quickly be adopted into mainstream and education.

 

References

Bower, M. (2008). Affordance analysis – matching learning tasks with learning technologies. Educational Media International, 45(1), 3-15. doi:10.1080/09523980701847115

Conole, G. (2015). Designing for Learning in an Open World (1st ed., pp. 47-63). Dordrecht: Springer. Retrieved from http://csuau.eblib.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/patron/FullRecord.aspx?p=1030803&echo=1&userid=Kw3jR%2bAhgEwAdjjiAfq0LQ%3d%3d&tstamp=1427684336&id=99B29BF9A978474F0ED16153A21450DBF7961F02

Drager, Y. 1, (2015). Affordances of Moodle – a multiplatform application. Yvette’s Reflective journal – A site of Discovery. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/yvette/2015/01/19/affordances-of-moodle-a-multiplatform-application/

Drager, Y. (2015). TPACK framework. Yvette’s Reflective Blog : A site of Discovery. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/yvette/2015/01/12/tpack-framework/

Drager, Y. (2015). Why should we use technology in the classroom?. Yvette’s Reflective Journal – A site of discovery. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/yvette/2015/01/12/why-we-should-use-technology-in-the-classroom/

Gartner,. (2014). Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies 2012. Retrieved from http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2124315

Gartner,. (2014). Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies 2014. Retrieved from http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2819918

The New Media Consortium,. (2014). NMC Horizon. Retrieved 30 March 2015, from http://www.nmc.org/nmc-horizon/

Web.archive.org,. (2007). Australian Flexible Learning Framework – Virtual Worlds – Real Learning!. Retrieved 30 March 2015, from http://web.archive.org/web/20070613001430/http://www.flexiblelearning.net.au/flx/go/home/projects/2006/newpractices2006/pid/368

Wikipedia,. (2015). Transparency (projection). Retrieved 30 March 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transparency_(projection)

Wikipedia,. (2014). Gestetner. Retrieved 30 March 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gestetner

2 thoughts on “The hype and trends of technology”

  1. You reminded me of so many aspects of my own technology journey – all the tools, from gestetner to a range of LMS systems, then the wilds of second life, twitter, and so on. I remember Youtube arriving..how amazing that was. Through all that we are responding in education, and adapting pedagogical practices to the tools AND the environments technology provides. Lucky you are out there helping us!

  2. I hadn’t seen that “hype” graph before – thanks for introducing – very interesting to follow how trends evolve – I often wonder if there are any social anthropologists doing longitudinal studies on this type of thing!

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