Triggering Students’ Engagement
kegfire @ stock.adobe.com
Technologies bear the great potential to turn around traditional ways of learning and teaching by providing opportunities for novel ways of student and teacher interaction.
The scenario “Triggering students’ engagement” gives an overview of how technologies can provide experiential and more interactive learning experiences and offer more flexible and engaging settings for teaching and learning.
Technological advancements aim much further than simply replacing blackboards with Multi-Touch LCD Screens. More experiential classes in primary, secondary, vocational, and higher education could be facilitated by immersive technologies such as Multimodal Acoustic Trap Display and devices such as XR Glasses and Mixed Reality Contact Lenses. These technologies allow teachers to create an out-of-the-classroom experience, where students can discover and learn augmented and virtual activities in a “real world” or workplace setting. Instead of just acquiring theoretical knowledge, students and apprentices get the chance to practice their skills in simulated environments relevant to their subject or occupation. With the use of a Kinaesthetic Communication Device, learners can also experiment new ways to interact with both physical and virtual objects in creative or production processes.
By adding using technology methods such as Build Information Modeling to the students’ devices, they can not only explore virtual 1:1 scale 3D models, but also create their own projects. They first visualize their creations, which are later materialized through 3D Printing, as seen in an experiment combining 3D visualizations in Oculus Rift and a mini 3D printer.
But not just the use of technologies can greatly strengthen experiential learning and learners’ engagement, but also new or improved learning methods and techniques. The game-based learning model, including approaches such as Gamification and Serious Games, is already being increasingly used in the context of development cooperation. Gamification applies the motivational structure of games to motivate learners to engage in certain learning activities or classroom settings, consciously or implicitly. With success stories such as Classcraft and Class Dojo leading the charge, well-developed solutions for gamified lessons are already available to be spread to more and more classrooms across the globe. In order to further increase the employability and labor market-relevant skills of TVET students, Portable Factories, which can be placed in freight containers, could provide non-virtual but highly mobile opportunities for learning within the work process. Such mini-teaching factories can also be moved from school to school to reach a higher number of beneficiaries.
The level of students’ engagement is an essential component of any successful learning environment. This can be greatly enhanced by new and extended learning environments that can also be integrated into formal education systems and complement formal learning in the classrooms. Platform-based strategies such as Cloud Education and Mobile Learning provide the basis for blended learning and more flexible forms to learn outside of school, training center and university buildings. Micro-learning Platforms specifically are more and more able to utilize AI for offering fast-paced, motivating, and engaging formats. In addition, with the spread of mobile devices, Location-based Learning offers segmented, specific learning content and informative communication based on students’ current location, which can further increase their engagement. One step further with regards to technological advancement and immersive environments are VR Classrooms which offer 360-degree virtual reality experiences with a student-friendly interface, gesture controls, and embedded education resources available for both students and teachers. Especially for TVET and university students, VR settings could in the near future simulate complex and expensive machinery, workplaces, laboratories, or procedures without the typically associated high costs or risks.