The world in which we live today is a vastly more globalised and connected place due to great improvements in technology, it is a digital world. A large range of digital lifestyle technologies exist in our modern lifestyle whether at home, work or in transportation (International Communications Union, 2009). The digital world surrounds us and impacts upon the very fabric of society, transforming every aspect of our lives such as communication (social media), business, the workplace, home, transport and education.
Growing up with digital technology affecting us in every manner, the way that we communicate with one another has changed, it is now a more complicated concept as compared to it in the past. When we connected with people personally in the past it was with those close to us it was raw and unedited, but now we communicate with others through a large range of methods through the internet via a variety of devices such as social media, messages and emails (Kjellstrom, 2013). The way we do business has changed with the digitalization of the world such as marketing, online finance and shopping. Properly wielded, digital technology can radically improve the performance of businesses, changing the way business is conducted and refining it whereas the opposite is true for those that reject embracing digitalization (Freakley, 2015). I use social media to stay in touch with people I know on the other side of the world in real time on my phone, I manage my finances through online banking services, find information of products and look at reviews online through my computer, rarely does a day go past without me using some sort of digital technology.
Digital technology has not left classrooms untouched either, education has changed. The classroom environment has been affected by a range of devices made available to the modern educator through new technologies such as multimedia and research tools and the learning activities have been revolutionised in the way they are performed (Scientix, 2016). These exist in many forms, such as interactive whiteboards, tablets and computers, internet access and more. Online tools for education such as collaboration/brainstorming tools, blogs, bulletin boards, emails exchanges, polls and multimedia presentations can assist in facilitate learning and allowing for more diverse teaching strategies (Haynes, 2012; Walsh, 2014). To be able to use these resources properly can increase and diversify a educator’s options and can create more learning opportunities for their students, enhancing their education.
The digital world has changed networking, marketing and the exchange of ideas on a global scale. Therefore it is important that modern educators understand the implications of living in a digital world and the how it affects our profession.
Teaching with digital technologies
Department of Education and Communities NSW. (2011). Teachers’ digital toolkit: Links4Learning. Retrieved from http://www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.gov.au/digital_rev/libraries/toolkit/
Freakley, S. (2015). Businesses must embrace the digital world to compete, or be left behind. Retrieved from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/12022636/Businesses-must-embrace-the-digital-world-to-compete-or-be-left-behind.html
Haynes, K. (2012). 12 Easy Ways to Use Technology in the Classroom, Even for Technophobic Teachers. Retrieved from http://www.teachhub.com/12-easy-ways-use-technology-your-classroom-even-technophobic-teachers
International Communications Union. (2009). Living in the Digital World. Retrieved from http://www.itu.int/newsroom/features/digital_world.html
Kjellstrom, A. (2013). What does it mean to be “connected” in today’s digital world? Retrieved from https://medium.com/new-media/what-does-it-mean-to-be-connected-in-todays-digital-world-49e12c1a8fa5#.1iw2a3vca
Scientix. (2016). TOPIC 2: TECHNOLOGY IN THE CLASSROOM. Retrieved from http://www.scientix.eu/web/scientix-cop-02/technology-in-classroom/-/message_boards/message/185735%3Bjsessionid=1454F3B030B86F19A9F196A8D6A8B7B2
Victoria State Government. (2015). Teaching with Digital Technologies. Retrieved from http://www.education.vic.gov.au/school/teachers/support/Pages/elearningcurriculum.aspx
Walsh, K. (2014). 8 Engaging Ways to use Technology in the Classroom to Create Lessons That Aren’t Boring. Retrieved from http://www.emergingedtech.com/2014/10/technology-create-lessons-that-arent-boring/