August 24, 2022
Never in the history of education has online learning been so important. But there’s a big difference between teaching online and providing quality online education, say researchers at the University of South Australia.
UniSA’s Center for Change and Complexity in Learning (C3L) focuses on the complex relationship between human and artificial cognition, how it changes society, knowledge processes, teaching and learning.
As Australia continues to struggle with teacher shortages, investing in education technology could help ease teachers’ workloads and streamline lengthy processes and reports.
C3L Director, Professor George Siemens is a global expert in education technology. He says integrating technology into learning is no longer an “add-on” but an essential part of modern teaching.
“Australia is making a massive shift to online and digital learning, which means schools need to think about how they can incorporate appropriate technology into their teaching,” says Professor Siemens.
“Over the past two years, educators at all levels have had to turn to online teaching methods as they deal with Covid-19 lockdowns. But as teachers, students, and parents have told us, moving classes to Zoom or Teams isn’t a viable long-term solution. Teachers want more and students deserve better.
“Education systems feel compelled to initiate changes and modernize teaching; they also know they have to make big decisions about innovation and technology, but getting started on that process can be overwhelming.
“This is where C3L can help. By working with schools to understand their needs, capabilities, and capacities, we can develop flexible, personalized, and responsive systems that not only support student-centered learning, but also capture key analytics to better inform teachers. and student support.
The C3L team is currently developing solutions for multiple school challenges, including the technologies that have the greatest impact on student success; how to use data to guide and support students in real time; improving the use of data to help teachers; artificial intelligence; and ensuring the privacy and security of student data.
Colleague C3L, UniSA Dr Vitomir Kovanovicargues that online learning can provide much-needed personalized learning, despite concerns that it is more suited to self-directed study.
“Traditionally, online learning has been more common in higher education because it allows students to operate in an open and very autonomous structure. But primary and secondary students have not yet acquired these skills, and schools are very aware of this,” says Dr. Kovanovic.
“By developing technologies that address individual learners, different teaching methods, while simultaneously addressing the ongoing challenges of limited funding and heavy teacher workloads, we can help both teachers and students .
“Quality, flexible and personalized online learning is possible, especially when schools and education technology providers work together.”
Contacts for maintenance: Professor George Siemens E : George.Siemens@unisa.edu.au
Dr Vitomir Kovanovic E: Vitomir.Kovanovic@unisa.edu.au
Media contact: Annabel Mansfield M: +61 4a79 182 489 E : Annabel.Mansfield@unisa.edu.au