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Can technology solve the crises of higher education?

September 27, 2019

Can technology solve the crises of higher education?

Colleges and universities have generally been quick to adopt new technologies, often even before their educational value has been proven. Throughout its history, higher education has experimented with technological advances as diverse as the blackboard and the personal computer. Some technologies have become permanent parts of the higher education enterprise. Others, such as the slide rule and the 16-millimeter movie projector, have been replaced as more sophisticated or more cost-effective technologies have emerged to take their place.

Many higher education institutions around the world are taking steps to integrate technology and OER to improve access to quality learning opportunities for their students. Integration of technology in teaching and learning can clarify many of the doubts that we have about the effectiveness of technology. In higher education, we should ask the effectiveness of what we do daily in our classrooms, and question why we do what we do? Is there no other alternative before us to change the status quo? Recent developments in technology (such as artificial intelligence, robotics, blockchain) have far-reaching implications for higher education institutions in terms of curriculum, pedagogy and certification. Technology is here to stay. How can we harness the potential of technology to prepare our learners for the uncertainties that lie ahead? Are we bystanders, reluctant adopters or are we ahead of the game? The future of higher education will depend on our response today.

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