From iPad to the surface computer, schools have been quick to embrace technology and introduce new ways of e-learning for students.
Private schools in Dubai have been at the forefront of this tech wave, as each school places greater emphasis on improving learning practices through gadgets and smart boards. The announcement of the Mohammed bin Rashid Smart Learning Initiative earlier this year was a sign of UAE’s keen interest in making schools’ e-learning enabled. Introducing ‘Smart Classes’ in public schools, students will have access to tablet PCs and high-speed 4G networks to open up new ways of learning. The increase in modern smart devices has brought about a time for change in education according to Sufian Dweik, regional manager, MENA at Brocade Communications. The old ‘one size fits all’ classroom paradigm of a teacher lecturing to a classroom full of students cannot hope to compete with today’s digital natives who learn on their own.
Schools at all levels are racing to capture the interest and imagination of students by bringing the innovations of e-learning technologies and applications into the classroom and curriculum.
However challenges remain as more Arabic content needs to be created to support the needs of schools following the curriculum provided by the Ministry of Education.
While experts debate the pros and cons of making tech more accessible for schools, educators can see the difference already. Students have better access to information on demand via the Internet. They are also challenged by innovative new e-learning applications. With wireless and multimedia connective, collaboration is taken to a new level as classrooms can be globally connected with students from different parts of the world learning together.
Smart Devices and the 1:1 Classroom: Smart devices make the way for 1:1 classrooms. Students have individual laptop computers, notebooks, tablets and smartphones, and they are able to simultaneously view streaming video content from the web or from a third-party educational video management system. Each individual student is able to view and work with the content in his or her own way, and also work more closely with the teacher in one-on-one sessions.
Extending the classroom
Next generation, high performance campus networks help schools extend the school day by enabling students to safely and securely access the schools’ learning tools and other education-appropriate materials available on the internet. This enables them to work collaboratively with peers and to interact with faculty from anywhere on campus. In many cases, they can also access the network from home and from within the community.
Schools can also leverage their campus networks to help increase operations efficiency. Universities can use their networks to deliver powerful security solutions, including remote video surveillance.
Wireless networks that connect the campus both indoors and outdoors are ideal solutions for increased security for people and things.
Schools are experimenting with the use of RFID chips in student identity cards to provide a better alternative to the student attendance system. RFID readers located in the bus, school gate and classroom can determine when a student has come into the bus, reached the school and attended a class. These logs can be maintained without the need for human intervention. — email@example.com