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The Future of Learning

In our globalised and highly networked world, many traditional industries and career roles face an uphill battle to survive. In this shifting context, it's crucial that education evolves so that the next generation of students are equipped with the skills needed to thrive in our changing economy. With this thought in mind, here are six technologies and teaching techniques that we believe will shape the future of learning.

1. Project based learning will be needed

By 2020, PeoplePerHour estimates that one in two adults will be working freelance in the UK and the US. With the gig economy expanding into more markets and job roles, it will become essential that students learn how to apply their skills to a diverse range of work situations. Project based learning helps to develop the organisational, collaborative and time management skills that will become crucial as an increasing number of people jump between different jobs.

2. Internships and real-world experience will be more crucial

Recent research reveals that a quarter of Brits believe their jobs will be replaced by robots in the next 10 years. Huge leaps in artificial intelligence and robotic automation means that many of the jobs currently fulfilled by humans will become obsolete. For this reason, schools must do more to provide their students with real-world learning opportunities that focus on the human skills machines won't be able to replace.

3. Virtual and augmented reality

Virtual reality (VR) uses computing power to create a simulated environment. Augmented reality (AR) is slightly different in that it superimposes a computer-generated image onto the user's view of the real world. Both technologies, however, offer the opportunity to make learning more transformational and engaging. In theory, VR and AR could soon allow students to visit ancient Rome, experience the inner workings of the human body and overlay a Picasso masterpiece onto the wall without leaving the classroom.

4. The nature of examinations will change

Computerised adaptive testing (CAT) is beginning to change the way students are examined. These tests analyse the ability of the student in real-time and adjust the difficulty of subsequent questions accordingly. CAT will make it easier for educational establishments to continuously test and assess the capabilities of their pupils. As a result, above average students will be challenged more, while those struggling will get the chance to keep practising until they achieve the required level.

5. Learning apps will become ubiquitous

Ofcom research has revealed that 90% of people aged 16 to 24 in the UK own a smartphone. This huge adoption rate means educational apps offer students the chance to learn using a device that fits into many other aspects of their daily life. Apps also make learning fun and allow students to apply knowledge with increased interaction; whether its tackling maths problems by solving a puzzle or getting to grips with a foreign language.

6. Online tutoring at the click of a button

Both the business and retail world are embracing increased personalisation and specialisation. Soon, education will follow. Traditionally, if a student has a problem, they need to wait until their next session with a teacher or tutor to get help. However, tutoring online allows people to connect with each other from anywhere in the world. With technology as the enabler, students and tutors will be able to exchange information, share ideas and interact in many new ways, all at the click of a button.

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