Coles notes- Learning Tech Trends

I chose to analyze Connie Malamed December 2010 opinion piece “Learning Technology Trends to Watch in 2011.”  In the true fashion of judging a book by its cover I chose this particular piece because of the visuals – a conscious choice as I feel I understand and learn better when there are visual cues that augment the information in the reading.  However, as many have already written it did turn out to be a “People Magazine” overview of learning technology trends as it glosses over each trend and does not really present anything new.  I say “really” because I did get excited about Augmented Reality and Virtual Worlds.  I had not heard of AR before the Emerging Market Poll last week and this article did more to explain it to me. I felt it was an interesting trend and one to look into. I especially like the possibilities of this for a language class. You can take a picture of something and then can be told what it is in your target language.  While I had heard of virtual worlds before I am especially interested as gaming is the topic of my group’s presentation.  However, I found the comments a better source of information for this than the actual body of the article.

The reason the article failed, in my view, is that it fails to mention some learning technologies that I feel are important – like “the cloud” (whether or not you agree with it, it still is newer than a mobile phone).  On that note I feel as if Malamed missed the mark on the mobile phone portion. It is true that mobile phones are becoming more and more important but I feel she could have mentioned which new apps were available for learning technology.  Using a phone is old news and I would have like to know what is NEW in the phone department not just that “there are new apps.”  

While I found parts of this article interesting I don’t think I would seek it out for professional development. I might recommend it to friends who are not really interested in technology to provide a ‘Coles notes’ version of some learning technologies they may like to try in their classroom.  

Posted in: Week 02: The Edtech Marketplace