The Future of Research and Learning

Whether it’s an elementary classroom or an employee looking to hone in on their skills, the future of research and learning is rapidly changing thanks to the strides that have been made in technology.

With the knowledge in mind, that tech is here to stay in a big way, here’s what the future of research and learning could look like in the very near future.

Learning Will Go Mobile

It’s not hyperbole when you hear the claim that everyone has a mobile phone. In the U.S., an incredible 91% of the population owns a smartphone. This is not expected to drop.

Mobile devices will impact learning as more people become aware of the benefits of mobile learning.

The benefits include:

  • Its convenience and flexibility.
  • It allows people to learn whenever or wherever that want.
  • Mobile learning additionally gives individuals the ability to interact and collaborate with anyone else in the world at any time.
  • Answers to complex questions can be accessed within seconds.
  • Businesses can potentially grow at a much faster rate or simply improve business performance more than in the past.
  • Anyone can look up their buddy or teacher’s brag points in seconds and know the truth – in real-time, as the information is needed.
  • It’s easy to implement mobile learning.

Hadley Ferguson, executive director of the Edcamp Foundation, says that students can “reach out beyond the walls of their classrooms to interact with other students, other teachers, and renowned authors, scientists, and experts to enhance their learning.”

Greater Access to Open Source Data

Open source refers to any program or platform that shares its source information with the general public. This allows anyone to modify the original form. This will not only grant people free access to free programs or resources, but also will allow others to share data and research archives with a larger community. By joining in the open source revolution, this can increase the chances of discovering new breakthroughs.

Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Change the Game

Think about a rural school that is 100 miles away from the closest city or the inner city with insufficient funds. How often could they visit a museum or access a larger library for research? Not very often. This can change, however, thanks to virtual and augmented reality.

Ethan Dunwill states in eLearning Industry that, “There are no buses to take them anywhere. Instead, the students are each given a pair of inexpensive virtual reality headsets that have been constructed largely from cardboard, and a glove. With just these two items they are able to virtually walk through the museum, page through books, watch presentations given by docents, and view any image they want from any angle.”

Dunwill adds, “various learning styles can be accommodated by adding sound, video, images, and interaction to what used to be a text based, 2 dimensional world.”

It Will Become a Lifelong Process

As noted earlier, advances in technology have allowed people to learn from anywhere they prefer. In fact, people will be able to continue learning throughout their lives because of the access to educational materials. Whether it’s signing up for a free online course or watching instructional videos, learning will become a lifelong process.

As Peter Drucker says, “Knowledge has to be improved, challenged and increased constantly, or it vanishes.”

Learners and Researchers Will Have a Voice

The Read Out Loud interactive application was “originally designed to take the simple educational activity of reading children’s books aloud and turn it into an opportunity for parents and children to learn together,” says Taylor Bennett on EdSurge News.

“Read Out Loud allows the user to scan any book and view the text in English and any other language side by side, creating a sort of ‘cheat-sheet’ that they can refer to while reading to their kids,” says Bennett. “Parents are able to engage in this important part of their children’s education and play the role of teacher, while engaging in learning themselves. The simple sentence structure and vocabulary typical of children’s books is excellent for improving literacy among children and does the same thing for parents.”

Most importantly, Bennett argues, is that learners will become more empowered since they’ll “have agency and creativity in their own education.” Users will “focus on relevant material, by choosing the stories they want to read to their children and selecting information integral to employment opportunities.”

Awais Ahmed is a student, blogger and digital marketer who helps small entrepreneurs to improve their online presence. He has a range of interests including technology, apps and small business.