Trends in ed-tech for 2018

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What are the emerging trends in education technology for 2018 and beyond?

As the end of 2017 approaches, we asked technology experts from RM Education to share their predictions for how they think education technology will evolve in 2018 and beyond. Here is what they had to say...

Pupils will expect seamless technology in school: As the drive for learning to more closely reflect life becomes greater, pupils will have higher expectations of the technology available to them in the classroom; they’ll expect it to be seamless, as it is in their homes and personal lives.
Toby Black, managing director

Peer-led support will form a key part of safeguarding: Peer-to-peer mentoring schemes are reinforcing positive and supportive behaviours, and helping pupils to take responsibility for their own online safety. Schools will start to make these schemes accessible to pupils from an earlier age, empowering future learners to be safe online.
Kat Howard, online safety lead

Machine learning will be at the centre of everything: Most schools are probably using machine learning every day without realising it. G Suite and Office 365 use machine learning extensively in their productivity suites to help users do things more intelligently. Most exciting is the ability to provide reliable and valid predictions on student performance, and thus make meaningful interventions.
Mark House, education consultant

We’re all going to need more bandwidth: Schools are consuming ever-greater volumes of bandwidth – a trend more pronounced in secondary schools due to the widespread adoption of cloud technologies. Bandwidth consumption increases by around 40 per cent year-on-year, so it will become critical for schools to get their infrastructure right to support this.
Kevin Kong, product manager for connectivity/ISP

Systems security must be more robust: The prevalence of malware and ransomware is a growing cause for concern, and in an age where data is so critical, schools must be rigorous in mitigating these kind of attacks. Having technical support that can detect risks before they reach your networks, and putting a clear governance policy in place for opening emails, will become more critical to system safety.
Silvana Tann, relationship manager

Flipped learning is here to stay: The trend towards flipped learning and a more collaborative classroom is continuing at pace. Online platforms that help to foster collaboration in the classroom – such as Google Classroom, One Drive and Microsoft Teams – will become more central to learning.
Becca Wren, brand and channel manager

Using one-to-one devices will become standard: The need for affordable one-to-one classroom devices will see a surge in demand for such products. The use of technology to share lessons and ideas live and in real-time with other schools, companies and establishments around the world will become more common.
Rachel Baker, network account manager

Critical data will be stored in the cloud: As we become more security-conscious, schools will look to store more data in the cloud. Using tools like Google Drive removes the need for memory sticks and allows teams to access their work in the cloud from anywhere – using secure passwords.
Chris Taylor, product manager

BYOD schemes will become standard: Providing that proper planning and the right infrastructure are in place, we will begin to see the majority of UK secondary schools adopting BYOD in some form as part of a wider plan to reduce costs, save time and increase engagement.
Martin Pipe, head of service scope & design

School systems must be scalable: School and academy trusts will need technology to scale to the rapidly changing requirements of their learners, teachers and administrators. Embracing the use of cloud-based applications, infrastructure and collaborative platforms will reduce costs, increase flexibility and enable educational technology to be more responsive to changing needs.
Jesse Johnson, head of multi-academy trusts

Schools will make better use of data for decisions: Schools are now realising the potential of the data held in their MIS. Schools will start to fully exploit their data for monitoring attendance patterns, communicating with parents, storing documents electronically, holding medical information, tracking SEND requirements and exploring contextual data analysis to spot anomalies and identify trends.
Caroline Fisher, Integris product manager

Collaboration tools will become more prevalent: Outside the classroom, children are fully conversant using technology to collaborate; they use it daily to make friends and socialise. We’ll see the use of similar technologies in the classroom, and this will enable children to learn from one another while engaging them in learning by making it both fun and relevant.
Hannah Wornham, trust relationship manager

Video communications tools will become more widespread: The popularity of video communications tools is testament to the way content consumption and communication is shifting categorically. While this will never replace the face to face conversation, it’s a good substitute when the latter isn’t possible. These technologies will be more prevalent in the classroom, with tools like Google Expeditions putting students into places and situations they wouldn’t otherwise experience.
Michael Oakes, Google sales specialist


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