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Within Reach

Mike Kemp

Within Reach

Annual report sheds light on emerging technologies that will reshape teaching and learning in schools.

posted July 9, 2011  |  Appears in the August/September 2011 issue of EdTech Magazine.

Now in its third year of publication, The NMC Horizon Report: K-12 Edition identifies the key trends that are shaping teaching, learning and creativity in a 21st century world and the critical challenges that today's schools are facing. This year's research effort, spearheaded by the New Media Consortium in collaboration with the Consortium for School Networking and the International Society for Technology in Education, envisions the following timeline for schools' widespread adoption of these six "technologies to watch" over the next five years.

Time-to-Adoption Horizon

1 Year or Less
• Cloud Computing: A set of strategies that distribute data, applications and computing cycles to and from many networked computers in and across regionally distributed and redundant data centers
• Mobiles: Internet-capable portable devices (including smartphones and tablets) that ­enable ubiquitous access to information, social networks, tools for learning and productivity, and hundreds of thousands of ­custom ­applications

2 to 3 Years
• Game-Based Learning: Refers to the impact of game play on cognitive development, including digital games that are goal-oriented or that use social game ­environments, non­digital games that are easy to construct and play, games developed expressly for education, and commercial games that lend themselves to refining team and group skills
• Open Content: Embraces not only the sharing of information (including curricula, ­resources and learning materials), but also the sharing of instructional practice and experiences

4 to 5 Years
• Learning Analytics: The amalgamation of data-gathering tools and analytic techniques to study student engagement, performance and progress in practice, with the goal of using what's learned to revise curricula, teaching and assessment in real time
• Personal Learning Environments: Student-designed learning approaches that encompass different types of content (including videos, applications and social media tools) chosen by a student to match his or her personal learning style and pace.

SOURCE: The NMC Horizon Report: 2011 K-12 Edition

To read the full report, go to nmc.org/pdf/2011-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf.

For a closer look at the project advisory board's process for researching, discussing and selecting the topics for this year's report, visit k12.wiki.nmc.org.

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