In recent times there has been much talk of a ‘4th industrial revolution’, as the lines between physical and digital experiences blur more and more. What exactly is the 4th industrial revolution and what skills can edtech help learners develop?
What is the 4th industrial revolution?
It is the rapid advancement of new technologies that is building on the developments of the third industrial revolution (the advent of electronics and automated production). According to Klaus Schwab, the Founder and executive chairman of the WEF, the fourth industrial revolution ‘is characterised by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres’.
How is it changing the world of work? Continue reading
If you’re an educator, the need to create educational content can sometimes take away time from other educational and organisational roles. Curating content, rather than creating it, has become a viable way to produce engaging, stimulating educational materials that present learners with clear information pathways. What exactly do we mean, however, when we talk about ‘curating’ educational content?
Curating is selecting and arranging to add value
In Michael Bhaskar’s Curation: The Book, the author talks about ‘the power of selection in a world of excess.’ In a world where there is so much high-value content freely available online (content that is available for re-licensing), creating new material isn’t always necessary. Digital technology has resulted in information overload, too. There is so much content available that it is harder than ever to digest all the information available for a given topic.
By way of some background, I am currently the digital publishing manager at the African branch of Cambridge University Press (CUP), the publishing business of the University of Cambridge. Prior to joining CUP, I worked as a consultant conceptualising and implementing innovative digital solutions for academic and local government initiatives in South Africa. During this period I launched The Ulwazi Programme with colleagues from the eThekwini Municipality. This collaborative digital library project collated user-generated, local-language, indigenous knowledge content and published it openly under a Creative Commons license. Based on this experience, as well as my desire to explore how a traditional publishing business could engage with with the open movement and the plethora of freely-available content online, I applied to attend the Institute of Open Leadership (IOL) workshops. The week-long sessions were intense; a bootcamp in open licensing and open education. More importantly, the workshop brought together some of the top minds currently working on open ideas. In formal and informal discussions, these mentors shared their thinking with me on open business models, providing examples of successful and sustainable open initiatives. Continue reading
Earlier this year I met with Svenia Busonia who was involved in a global research project looking at edtech clusters and the adoptions of various initiatives in diverse regions. Together with her partner Audrey Jarre, she visited India, New Zealand, South Korea, France, New Zealand, Australia, the USA and South Africa. While in Cape Town we discussed the work Cambridge University Press (CUP) is doing in the digital education arena, in South Africa and Nigeria. They also met with local edtech startups Greenshoots, Siyavula, Code X and Rethink Education.
To read more on the project visit their website at www.edtechworldtour.com or download the project report here.
The global buzz unleashed by the release of the Pokémon Go game for smartphones in 2016 exemplifies how augmented reality technology is growing. Educational institutions and app developers are already finding ways to incorporate the exciting, perception-bending capabilities of augmented reality design into lesson and textbook design. Read more about how augmented reality is revolutionizing EdTech:
First: What is augmented reality? Continue reading