MIT 11.133x : Implementation and Evaluation of Educational Technology – Week 3 Sum Up

What does it take to implement a educational technology? You have the idea that can supposedly change the world of ed tech and learning, but how to implement it?

Throughout the course, in the past 3 weeks I was constantly having my idea of creating an ed tech. With each passing week the course taught me something new which can be used to carve the idea even better.

By the end of 3 weeks I was having a very clear vision of what area of learning I have to target in my ed tech implementation, but again no technical knowledge was there on how to shape up the implementation wire-frame.

This week was about Implementation of education technology. What does it take to successfully implement an ed tech? What are the challenges and what should be done to overcome them.

I was having an idea to implement a learning management system, actually an start -up idea! So all the course material was used to carve the idea only.

Barriers in implementation : 

Course introduced the i5 framework to evaluate all the aspects associated with the implementation of ed tech.

i5 framework

 

The graphic above describes all the aspects of ed tech. It covers all the barriers in implementation of ed tech.

Professional Development of teachers and educators : 

Next important topic discussed in the course was professional development of the teachers and educators. After all teachers are the one who are going to use the ed tech, thus development of their attitude towards ed tech is the key factor.

Professional development is long term process and needs constant effort over a long period of time. We need to connect teachers to the ed tech world and constantly work to make their attitude constructive towards it.

Equal investment should be made both on tools of ed tech and the teacher’s development who is going to use that tool.

While implementing an ed tech we should be constantly in touch with the teachers and educators. Their feedback on prototypes is the magic potion.

On enhancement I can think of is results in schools come pretty late. It loses the context of the test which was given by the student. Making a Assessment Tool  for the school can create a lot of difference.

Goal of ed tech implementation should not be to only present the information to the student but to orchestrate a learning environment around them.

I was relating all the ideas to my ed tech start-up idea. And this was the exact next thing tackled by the course.

Ed Tech Start-Ups : 

There is great potential for start-ups in the field of ed tech. Especially for the ones working on products for school curriculum and for efficiency in school operations.

Challenges faced by the ed tech start-ups : 

Honestly this was the exact same thing going in my mind before I played this video. My reaction was “Get out of my brain!”.

  1. Lot of ed tech start-ups
  2. This creates lot of tools having scattered ideas.
  3. Lack of practical testing.

Ed tech industry is slow when it comes to giving feedback on products. But that is exactly opposite of fast paced rapid development methodology of start-up culture. This is where the problem lies.

A remedy can be to include schools in the pipeline of development cycle and give them prototypes on regular basis to get feedback.

What comes after conceptualizing your start-up idea? Entrepreneurship!

Entrepreneurship in the field of ed tech : 

There are lot of challenges here.

  1. These guys are real difficult buyers.
  2. Getting fit in school budget is tricky.
  3. Sales are seasonal.
  4. Selling at the right price is always a challenge.

Few things that can be done to make life little less miserable can be  :

  1. Blended learning should be emphasized.
  2. Understand the tech requirements.
  3. Freemium model is great to get customers and collect data.

The course also included some start-up stories of ed tech entrepreneurs. Though stories are too long to be discussed here (I am already feeling sleepy :P), but the essence can be stated pretty easily.

Make products that are easy to learn, support the pedagogical features, are easily accessible and most importantly fun to use.

Mistakes made by start-ups  : 

  1. Not understanding data privacy.
  2. Terms of service should be flexible.

Teaching is the profession without which no other profession can exist.

Throughout the course I was having the idea of how can I make education more effective using ed tech. Keeping indian scenario in mind, I will look forward to implement a LMS (Learning Management System).

To take the first steps towards it I will be working on Assessment Tool for teachers and students both.

Being a software developer I also looked for open source organizations working in the field of ed tech. I found BuilmLearn pretty impressive.  Especially the idea of making education apps for mobile. Considering india’s economy mobile can be a very good step towards implementing technology and innovation.

I will look forward to get in touch and contribute to this organization. More on this another post. (Almost falling asleep on keyboard 😛 ).

Last week of the course left. See you guys next time.

 

 

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