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The Role of Digital Technologies in Education Essay

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Updated: Feb 7th, 2022

Introduction

One thing that unites the speeches is the desire to build an integrated community of inventions that benefit the whole world. Next-generation social media tools have opened up opportunities for millions of people to participate in collaborative product creation, whether it’s entertainment portals, free encyclopedias, or emergency maps. However, the ability to cooperate with individuals to create something useful to society is an important task.

Speakers’ Ideas

The essence of Clay Shirky’s speech is in three main principles: free time, collaboration, civic value. His motivating tone can be seen from his words: “We’ve got a choice before us. We’ve got these trillion hours a year” (Shirky, 2010). He does not use humorous or sarcastic methods to inspire the audience; he directly says that people should be able to use their free time correctly for society’s good.

Unlike Shirky, who uses specific facts and opinions about the applications, Mitch Resnick utilizes personal stories to interest the audience. The interactive Mother’s Day card and the story of a 13-year-old boy convey the idea of the importance of technology for an individual’s development. Mitra’s speech is the most emotionally rich and expressive since he makes use of stories in the form of dialogues and humor rather than personal ones (Mitra, 2013). His statement aims to create the future of learning by supporting children from all over the world.

Problems and Rebuttal

Mitra’s inspirational speech provides one solution for improving educational performance in the technologically advanced world. However, there is a flaw in his speech: he does not concretize ways of reaching school in the clouds. It is clear that the use of technology is critical in this school, but his speech is full of irony and humor does not explain how children from all over the world will have access to it.

Resnick’s speech was the most coherent because it had a minor bias. Starting with a small story about postcards, Resnick turns to the need for programming, not only for the younger, but also for the elderly, and comes to the idea of creativity and ways of expressing oneself (Resnick, 2012). Although Shirky’s speech was mostly based on facts from all, there is a bit of inconsistency. At first, he presents LOLcats as “the throwaway stuff”, then says that he likes it (Shirky, 2010). Community value is as significant as civic since any community is focused on creating value for the organization and its members. A common interest leads to a value that can be realized; therefore, the foundation for civic value is in the communal one.

Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs)

The country’s economic development is closely linked to the level of national education. A noticeable trend is the development of online learning; precisely, current production called massively open online courses (MOOCs). MOOCs are interactive training courses aimed at participating in large-scale interactive educational sessions through free access to the Internet. E-courses include text lecture notes, video lectures with subtitles, homework assignments, quizzes, and final exams. The authors of the courses are professors from leading universities in the world. MOOCs allow students to discover new areas of expertise, prepare for exams, take refresher courses, improve their qualifications, or satisfy their curiosity. These courses provide an opportunity not only to listen to lectures for self-education but also to pass exams on them and receive a certificate that can be delivered to an employer for career growth. MOOCs offer interactive opportunities for users that allow them to create a community of students and teachers.

MOOCs’ main advantage is that it is rightfully considered free and open (Weinhardt & Sitzmann, 2019). Firstly, in many countries, the education cost is high, and it can be challenging to pay for people from the middle class. Secondly, if students have money, it is complicated to enter an elite university because of the high competition and requirements. One of the main advantages can also be considered the fact that MOOCs are an excellent platform for scholarly inter-ethnic communication. However, part of the materials that previously only students of elite universities had access to today is available to absolutely anyone. The principle of freedom of knowledge was proclaimed a long time ago, but now it began to acquire real features.

Moreover, MOOCs are considered adequate for learners as they are ordinarily advertised free of charge, and colleges and instructive companies support advancement costs. Therefore, there is no budgetary speculation on the portion of a student who signs up for a MOOC, which increments the student’s return on venture (Weinhardt & Sitzmann, 2019). The process of monetizing MOOCs for educational companies is unclear; however, the investment financial return should be beneficial for individuals.

MOOCs have turned out to be a kind of vanguard of the liberalization of modern education. Many courses use gamification, which makes them attractive to students and expands the understanding of traditional teaching tools. The undoubted advantage of MOOCs is the variety of course topics. A designer, a biologist, a physicist, and an architect can find useful and interesting materials on them. Besides, MOOCs are also not constrained by the conventions of traditional education. Students can study when it is convenient by dosing training or going through the weekly material at a time.

One of the drawbacks of MOOCs is the language barrier. Even though English has long been recognized as the language of international science and education, the concept of mass will be limited concerning courses, until most of them are accompanied by at least subtitles in the most common languages. Despite this fact, MOOCs are an excellent opportunity for distance education, which is foolish to miss for people striving for self-development.

References

Mitra, S. (2013). Build a school in the cloud. [Video]. TED. Web.

Resnick, M. (2012). Let’s teach kids to code. [Video]. TED. Web.

Shirky, C. (2010). How cognitive surplus will change the world. [Video]. TED. Web.

Weinhardt, J. M., & Sitzmann, T. (2019). . Human resource management review, 29(2), 218-225. Web.

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