It wasn’t so long ago when the classroom consisted of a chalkboard faced by straight columns of desks and a projector that would never quite come into focus. All assignments were handwritten and report cards… had a way of getting lost.
Today’s students on the other hand have a classroom environment already dominated by technology. They type their assignments and store them digitally, have video chats with doctors, scientists, and other professionals, and can view their grades online. Although they may not see that last point as a bonus.
When you think about how much the classroom has changed in just the past 20-30 years, it makes it even harder to picture what they’ll be like in 10-15 more. To get a better idea of what that picture might be we asked some of the leading minds in the education industry:
What’s the future of classrooms?
They had this to say…
Adrian Ridner, CEO & Co-Founder of Study.com
“Several trends are coming together to suggest change is coming to the classroom: a whole tech-savvy generation, emerging technology trends being embraced in the classroom, and a shift in teaching strategies from implementing traditional lecture-based curriculum to developing critical thinking individualized learning plans. The classroom of the future will be very different from today. Personalization and competency-based education will grow as technology grows. The physical classroom will be less important as students use technology to learn at their own pace. Simulations, virtual reality, and project-based learning will encourage a collaborative learning environment that fosters critical thinking skills. Future teachers will be able to reach all types of learners by leveraging edtech that engages as well as educates students by stimulating all their senses.”
Emma Moore, CEO of Fundamental
“The future of classrooms will rely on experts for the major components of lessons, instead of throwing large books for the students to consume. They may utilize this material in text or more interactive forms, but it will not be in long form textbooks. They will learn with face-to-face tutorial or holograms for classroom interactions, depending on the subject matters.
The more hands on issues will be teachers, but when it comes to the meat of teaching, the local experts, as well as national or international experts, virtually will assist more so than ever.
The student’s brain patterns will be measured to check for attention span and cognitive strength. Their results will help place them in the correct level for each subject matter to maximize their potential.”
Sabari Raja, CEO & Co-founder of Nepris
“Future classrooms will be more virtual, but not virtual in that students won’t go to a brick and mortar classroom rather, we will bring opportunities and experiences to them virtually. Students will see the inside of hospital rooms, meet with students from around the world, and talk with subject matter experts, through online chats and virtual conversations. They will build, learn and engage with resources that had previously been too expensive to secure. Augmented reality will seed this as will connectivity platforms like Nepris because the WORLD is the classroom now.”
Kathryn Starke, Urban Literacy Specialist, Author, Founder & CEO of Creative Minds Publications, LLC
“I’ve seen the educational industry change, progress, and even recycle or reuse curriculum from the past. As imagined, technology in education will continue to improve and evolve to match student academic performance. However, technology will be used in a more selective and differentiated fashion to provide individualized instruction based on student strengths and challenges. This same use of identify strengths and challenges of students academically, socially, and emotionally will be used to increase collaboration and independent study among children. Think about the teacher more as a coach supporting students in one-on-one and small group settings rather than a whole group lecture. Student performance, portfolios, units, and presentations will become a larger portion of grades instead of assessments.”
Dr. Sonny Magana, Founder of Magana Education
“If we continue along our current trajectory, students in future classrooms will sit in front of computers passively absorbing information transmitted by a teaching robot. Future classrooms will simply reproduce in a digital realm what’s currently being done in the analog world: mistaking the transmission of information for authentic knowledge generation. Here’s another possibility: future classrooms will be expansive places where authentic experiential learning is distributed among a wide variety of physical and virtual spaces that are directed by students’ individual interests, passion, and purpose. Learning spaces of the future will include interactive entrepreneurial environments where students can explore new content knowledge through inquiry design, learning how to learn and how apply their learning to solve complex, wicked problems that matter to them. So which future classroom will emerge? That depends on whether we choose to disrupt the status quo by preparing students for their future rather than our past.”
Gene Caballero, Co-Founder of GreenPal
“Before I started my entrepreneurial journey, I was in security sales in the education sector for a Fortune 50 tech company. The largest shift that I observed was the need for security. Not only data security but security of the classrooms. Software companies have evolved into creating software that recognizes patterns in students that could be a possible threat to the environment. Any behaviors that were observed as possible threats would be evaluated by psychologists. Great threat prevention for the future of the classroom.”
John Kogan, Founder & CEO of Illumeo, Inc.
“Classrooms, formerly the way in which you learned to be a corporate professional, be it undergrad or graduate – and even once you are at a company – are going away. Core subject learning will move online and be less generalized, more tuned to specific job roles, and one heck of a lot less expensive. Bye bye to the generic MBA and CPA, with few exceptions. Classrooms will be replaced by experience, in the field, which will more directly and efficiently support the online learning. This move simply follows already existing trends toward flexible and affordable learning, with a bent towards more vocational learning, earlier in life, towards all manner of professional positions.”
Vasiliki Baskos, Founder of Learn Greek Online
“There will be no physical classrooms in the future.
Virtual classrooms will take over. Technology is almost ready to accommodate virtual classrooms of 20-30 students, all of them in different physical locations.
Besides audio and video, technology may accommodate the transmission of smell as well. This may be helpful in literature or chemistry studies.
Scheduling and time zones, grouping people that are all competent in the same language may be challenging, not the distance.
Since the participants of the classroom will not be restricted to the residents of a particular neighborhood, it will be much easier to form classes with groups of people (students) that share the same interest/major/specialization, same background, same level of competence etc.
Students will have a wider choice of what online institution to enroll, instead of having to attend the neighborhood public school. Those online institutions will probably be monitored by a government agency that certifies them and making them suitable to replace public schools.”