Friday, September 30, 2011

Teachers' Role in the Tech Age

What's teachers' role in the Tech Age?

The environment of learning is changing now with the development of technology. So is the way of learning. George Siemens argues that because of the changing ways and environment of learning, educators need to rethink about a new theory which can fit in the learning environment in this technology age.  In his milestone article, Siemens proposes a new theory-connectivism to explain how learning is conducted in this technology age. However, as teachers ourselves, we need to think about what teachers' role will be. Is teachers' role changed in this new environment? How should teacher react to this change? 

For me, I don't think teachers role will be changed drastically in this new learning environment. Many teachers  worry about teachers will be replaced by technology. It is not necessary at all for teachers to panic, for teachers' role won't be undervalued by technology. In turn, teachers' role is more important to help students survive this fundamental change of learning and guide students to gain the ability to stay current while knowledge is changing fast. Teachers is still like a guide to guide students and introduce them ways and methods to acquire the ability to share and connect with each other.

The way of learning is changed from linear learning to a more complex way. As Siemens mentioned in his video that: "The network is the learning." (Siemens video) What teachers should do is to concern students' desire to express their ideas and guide them how to find an efficient and appropriate way to contact with others and build up a net work so that they can stay current with the knowledge. As Siemens indicated in his article Connetivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age that: "This amplification of learning, knowledge and understanding through the extension of a personal network is the epitome of connectivism." (p 8).

Therefore I think teachers role as a guide is vital to lead students survive the chaos information in digital age and master the ability to stay current with their knowledge by connecting with people. 

1 comment:

Maryanne said...

I think your analogy of a teacher as a guide works very well in today's highly technological world of teaching and learning.