Weighing in on Technology and Personalized Education

Published Mon Jun 26 00:00:00 EDT 2017

By Shawn Mahoney, Ph. D., Chief Academic Officer


Q&A with Shawn Mahoney on how technology is personalizing learning in today's classrooms.

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"Personalized learning gives students more opportunity to become architects of their own learning path as the technology adapts to their specific needs."

What is the most encouraging industry trend you see happening that is benefiting both students and teachers?

SM: Improving educational outcomes — at scale — is crucially important. Now, with the support of technology and more widespread accessibility, addressing students’ individualized needs is more possible than ever. And perhaps, most interestingly, remediation is one of the applications in which personalized education technology has been proven to have the most promise for the future.

How can technology be incorporated in schools to help improve collaboration in the classroom?

SM: Context is key to improving collaboration using technology. For instance, technology can be utilized to send daily newsfeeds to teachers and students to spark collaborative discussion related to current events. Similarly, multimedia interactives and simulations allow students to experiment and explore virtual worlds that might not be accessible without technology.

In your opinion, how is educational technology affecting personalized learning?

SM: Personalized learning gives students more opportunity to become architects of their own learning path as the technology adapts to their specific needs. In addition, teachers gain access to analytics that can help them further tailor their instruction for individuals and in the classroom — ultimately resulting in significant improvements in students' engagement, confidence and learning outcomes.

What do you believe is the most important benefit of educational technology on learning outside of the classroom?

SM: Educational technology offers possibility, choice and the ability to regulate the where, when and how of learning. Students can use products that adapt to their individual learning styles and unique circumstances. Digital tools also help make the most of limited study time, and learning can happen wherever and whenever students are ready.


This article originally appeared on Media Planet: Education and News Careers and can be found here.