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How to use technology to better prepare students for the workforce

Though technology is one of the most meaningful and effective learning tools out there for students, it's ironic that there are plenty of schools around the world, including the United States, where computer deployment remains low. The use and adoption of modern educational technologies are imperative to improve student performance and make them prepared to face the serious challenges that they will face in the future.

Why technology is so important in schools?

The adoption and increased use of technology and other devices in classrooms are more than just fancy computers, tablets, digital boards, or the internet. Using technology is about engaging students in ways that will increase their learning and ultimately groom them for the digital workforce of tomorrow. Furthermore, there are learning apps such as these that enhance the students learning experience and equip them with future-ready skills they need to apply for jobs of the future. As more and more employers demand potential employees to be technology literate, it is obvious that students need digital literacy to begin their careers. Skills like creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaboration are also necessary to succeed in the workplace, and being tech savvy will allow the students to develop and hone these important life skills.

Here are some effective ways that technology will better prepare students for the future workforce, no matter which path they choose.

Encourages teamwork

Teamwork and collaboration are necessary for students throughout their educational and professional careers. It is something they have to deal with in many situations. Collaboration can lead to effective learning. Technology encourages students to collaborate more and provides them with better opportunities to communicate. Furthermore, technology also allows students to work on team projects and share their strengths. When students work together, they learn to share, learn how to listen, and work well with their fellow mates. Teamwork and collaboration also enable students to work through conflicts to find the best resolution.

Develops critical thinking skills

Critical thinking is one of the topmost skills or qualities employers want to see in their potential employees. Employers simply don’t have the time and incentives to explain their employees on how to complete a task they assigned to them in detail. They want their employees to figure it out for themselves. To be successful in the workplace, students should have the mental prowess to think about the task or project on hand and come up with the ideal solutions to complete it. Initiatives like One-to-One (1:1) computing and connected classrooms will enable students easier and better access to necessary tools and resources, which will allow them to develop the habit of working through tasks effectively and creatively.

Inculcates responsibility

When schools deploy various technology-enabled devices and other tools to students, most of them are school-sponsored. Therefore, every student is required to abide by a code of conduct concerning the usage and material accessed on the device(s). This agreement instills a sense of responsibility and ownership of the student. Under any circumstances, the student is found misusing their assigned device or breaches their code of conduct, it is highly possible that the student’s privilege to access the device will be revoked. There may also be imposed with disciplinary actions. By putting this level of accountability, students will not only be responsible for the ways they use technology, but they will also be fully aware of the reinforcing consequences.

Teaches students to adapt

The rate and speed of various technologies are changing are unprecedented and undeniable. Most students are for the most part familiar with different technologies way before they are introduced in the classrooms. They are more adaptable and comfortable with new technology. Even students who have restricted access to the internet and other forms of technology at home have the chance to engage with technology and increase their computer skills as its being adopted in the classrooms. As technology changes, students will quickly adapt to future technologies sooner or later.

Instills career learning

We already established the fact that by using technology students become more engaged in the classroom. Adoption of technology in the classroom also teaches the students to enjoy and become more involved with the learning process, even if they don’t seem to realize it. As students ask more questions, seeks new information, finds answers and facts, their habit of exploratory learning develops. This is the building block of career learning. Career learners continuously seek new information and ways to improve themselves, which ultimately leads them to acquire skills which they can actually use throughout their personal and professional lives.

One last thing

Last but not least, to make the adoption of technology in the classroom a success, the schools should implement pragmatic initiatives to address inequities in technology access and make that teachers at all levels are literate in technology. Schools should also ensure that the concerned authorities and educators put the appropriate technology tools into the hands of our students.