Education is being upended by technological change, decreasing attention spans, and new employer demands. For educators to continue providing quality education to their students, they must be aware of the trends impacting how education is delivered, how their students learn best, and what employers are now looking for in graduates. Below are the top five trends that continue to change and shape education in 2022 and beyond.
Technology Is Changing How We Teach And Learn
In 2017, almost 7 million students were enrolled in online learning at higher educational institutions. Today that number is exponentially higher due to natural growth and a shuttering of in-person learning due to a global pandemic. Online learning provides students with greater flexibility by allowing them to watch recorded lectures and submit assignments through the internet. For instructors, online education lets them accommodate a greater variety of learning styles. Learning management systems such as Blackboard and Moodle also allow instructors to monitor student progress and provide feedback to their students.
Employers Are Looking For Soft Skills
One of the primary purposes of higher education is to prepare students for the workforce and to be productive citizens. One of the main demands of employers today is that they want graduates and job seekers to have soft skills such as critical thinking, creativity, problem-solving, and people management. With a more significant shift towards online learning, many higher education institutions find it challenging to teach soft skills in an online learning environment. Expect universities to try and find creative ways to cultivate the soft skills employers are looking for.
The Attention Span Of Students Is Decreasing
Studies show that the attention span of the younger generations, such as millennials, has gotten shorter. The average attention span used to be about 12 seconds, and now it is about 8. Technology such as mobile phones and the internet is primarily to blame for the lower attention span. In higher education, this means that instructors must create engaging and visually appealing content to grab the attention of their students.
Instructors Are Becoming Facilitators
The rise of online learning and the vast amount of information readily available on the web is changing the roles of instructors. Instead of being the primary source of information and feeding information from a top-down approach, instructors are increasingly becoming facilitators in the education of their students. This trend is set to become even more prevalent as technology continues to make information more readily available than ever.
Rapidly changing technology and new developments in many fields are creating a need for lifelong learning. This refers to the need for current workers and former college graduates to return to school to learn new skills and knowledge to continue thriving in the workplace.