Technology has never played a larger role in education. Business schools that want to stand out in the midst of competition for students will do well to realize this and make necessary adjustments to utilize technology throughout their curriculum and earning environment. Here are five tech trends that cutting-edge business schools are developing as part of their next-generation programming.
Digital Course Materials
For many students, the educational experience meant enrolling for courses in person then visiting the school's book store in order to buy books and resources needed for that semester. Those days are over. Some of the most innovative business schools in the country have streamlined their class resource list to include nothing more than a tablet pc with all needed information for the courses pre-downloaded and ready to work through and stream as the class progresses. Digital course materials are often included in the price of tuition, saving students money and the hassle of needing to sell their used books at the end of the semester.
One of the greatest hinderances to resource accessibility and sharing occurs when trying to broadcast information over differing systems. An example of this is when a student attempts to open an attached Pages document when she only has Microsoft Word downloaded on her computer. A similar frustration would be attempting to charge a phone but not having the correct type of charging cable to do so. College campuses are addressing this issue by working on technologies which allow for information sharing and collaboration across different types of technological interfaces. Students will no longer be bound by the unique brands and operating systems of their technical devices and will be able to communicate more freely.
Once seen as merely the evolution of video games, virtual reality will continue to develop in the future and be a viable tool for business students. As David Marlett writes, "Just within the last two years, there has been a great leap forward in immersion techniques. Along the way, we've discovered that VR is not just for entertainment — gaming and movies, for example — but that it also has broad commercial applications for the likes of virtual travel, real estate evaluation, and remote training." VR will allow students to interface with environments and gain a better understanding to help promote application to the business theory covered during coursework.
Building architecture and classroom layout are being improved during the design and construction process of today's business schools in order to provide students with even more opportunities to thrive. Gone are the days of sterile, fluorescent bulb-lit spaces with rows of desks pointed toward a blackboard. Today's beautiful business schools include inspiring design and user-friendly work spaces which encourage students to collaborate with one another utilizing Wi-Fi access, whiteboards, and comfortable lounge seating.
Video Capture and Sharing
Video production and broadcasting has never been more popular in our history than today. Access to high quality video capturing associated with today's smart phone, combined with the development of YouTube and popularity of social media apps such as Instagram, mean that thousands of videos of all types are being uploaded to the internet each day. While this has resulted in a spike in popularity for online degrees, students taking courses in the classroom can also benefit from this technological advancement. Many professors across the country video each of their lectures and make them available to students in order to review at a later time. The benefits of having each of your instructor's classes in a video library can be helpful for a number of reasons including the ability to accurately cite references, review talking points, and not miss any notes due to absences over the course of the semester.
As technology continues to advance, the nation's best business schools will continue to find ways to use in to enrich the educational experiences of their students. These are just a few ways, among many, that technology will continue to be developed in the classroom.