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Can technology solve the crises of higher education?

October 15, 2019

Can technology solve the crises of higher education?

The short answer is yes. Can technology address the challenges faced by higher education? Has it increased access and bridged divides? Has technology led to improved outcomes? These are some of the most frequently asked questions that the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has been asked in the last 30 years.  Heads of Government created COL with the express mandate to use distance learning and technologies to increase access to quality education and training.

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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