Hooper and Rieber (1995) state that the most imperative aspect of integrating educational technology is to create learning environments in which students actively construct knowledge in cognitive partnerships with technology. Technology shouldn’t be the center of the learning. However, it should be tools to assist teachers in promoting better student learning experience.
When designing a technology-enhanced learning, educators/designers of classes should promote active learning approaches such as hands-on virtual experiences, collaborative projects, real-time formative assessments, and student-centered backchannel group discussions with help of educational technology. Firstly, hands-on learning using simulations, augmented reality and virtual reality can enhance the learning experience and help students grasp difficult concepts in STEM classes. Secondly, collaboration through technology in group settings can enhance students’ interaction, engagement, learning and reasoning skills in STEM classes. Thirdly, technology significantly facilitates the use of formative assessment – this is a frequent, interactive assessment of student progress and understanding (OECD, 2005). Formative assessment software can enable instructors to provide students with more personalized learning and to obtain immediate feedback to reduce misconceptions in STEM classes. Finally, group discussion utilizing backchannel chat software, like backchannelchat.com and Slack, can provide students with safe and secure class discussion environment that can encourage participation and engagement.
Hooper, S. & Rieber, L.P. (1995). Teaching with technology. In A.C. Ornstein (Ed.), Teaching: Theory into practice (pp. 154-170). Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
OECD (2005), Formative Assessment: Improving Learning in Secondary Classrooms, OECD Publishing.