In recent times, “IoT” has become more than just a buzzword. A Few years back, industry experts had predicted this – that a new system of interconnected devices will transform the way we are communicating. It happened, and it got a name “Internet of Things” or IoT.
It’s become a fully established discipline now. By Gartner’s latest report, there can have a 30% increase in the total number of IoT-connected devices in this year. In various sectors, the implications of IoT are explicit, just like automobile and healthcare industry. But what about education?
Extreme Networks conducted a survey on this year – over 600 respondents of K-12 institutions and higher IT managers. They found about 46% of them, believe IoT technology will transform education within the next couple of years. Now itself, we can see this changeover by virtue of video conferencing techniques and similar offerings.
The influence of IoT in education is expected to increase in the coming days. There’s been already a smart school concept that uses IoT technologies for the better understanding of students on a subject. So far, various educational tools can be considered as part of this – including 3D printers, school buses, attendance tracking, VR headsets, interactive whiteboards, etc. One important aspect of IoT in education is – improvement is happening to not just the physical infrastructure, but to the quality of education. So, even there are negative aspects, its implications in education cannot be ignored simply.
How Internet of Things can make Education Smarter?
Engagement of Students: Digitalized study materials and smart technologies can help to increase the engagement rate of students over traditional learning methods. Perhaps, this would be the key benefit that IoT can offer to the modern education.
Safety of Students: A recent incident can be pointed out here – when Fraser Public Schools in Michigan added video sensors through their campuses, it was found fighting incidences between students dropped to zero. Students had known they would be punished if any of such videos got recorded. So, at least in campuses, such incidences came to an end.
Connect Academies: You might have heard of tools like C-Pen. These digital highlighters are capable of transforming printed text into digital format and that can be saved into our gadgets. Suppose, a student sitting in a class can interact with educators around the globe. Teachers can give students a real-time experience of the subject through sensors and live feeds monitoring.
Care for Special Needs Students: Various connected devices are available now – in order to help students with special needs. For example, a visually impaired student after using such an IoT device can able to read the text on his computer easily without asking for a second person’s help. This can aid to his/her self-confidence to yield better productivity.
Possible Drawbacks of this technology
Security and Privacy: The hardest part or the main challenge of IoT-education alliance would be a matter of security and privacy. Of course, data collection is an inevitable element of this collaboration. A huge number of educational traits are being collected here – including a student’s learning history, location and a number of personal details. So, security-privacy concerns about IoT in education are among the key issues that need to address carefully.
Implementation Cost: As many of you imagine, the cost of implementation is also a big challenge of IoT in education. These expenses include the cost to purchase hardware, software licenses, and maintenance price.
Lack of Interoperability: There’re different smart IoT technologies currently implemented in education sector like interactive whiteboards, attendance tracking, temperature sensors, etc. Some of these technologies are showing little interoperability with some other smart technologies. These hurdles may definitively affect the future development of digitalized education.
IoT technologies offer a much more productive learning experience if used effectively. In the coming days, more smart technologies can enter into the realm of education. Be aware of the possible risks associated with these technologies and use them safely and wisely.