In today’s dynamic era, everything is evolving at a great pace, and so is technology. With the evolution in technology, dependency on it is also increasing. It is becoming significant to be friendly with it. The emergence of online education has increased the use of information and communication technology tools to impart education, and it is becoming essential for teachers to have a critical understanding of the same. Before dwelling deep into why teachers should have a critical understanding of ICT or why ICT is important in education. Let’s get to know about ICT.
What is ICT?
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is a diverse set of technological tools and resources used to communicate, store and manage information. These include computers, the internet, telephone, broadcasting technologies such as television and radio. During this pandemic, online education has revolutionized the traditional ways of education. Computers and other ICT tools like the internet and mobile phones have served as one of the most valuable resources in a classroom.
Thanks to computers, mobile phones and the internet, students can have access to a pool of information and that too at their fingertips. Teachers nowadays should be tech-savvy and should adapt these ICT tools while teaching kids to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of education at all levels. The teachers should know when and how to use ICT tools and the benefits offered by them.
Importance of ICT for Teachers:
Information and communication technology helps teachers enhance their teaching skills and modify teaching styles to keep students interested and engaged in learning new things and develop a critical understanding of ICT. As technology advances, ICT has become equally important for teachers. Here are a few points stating the importance of ICT for teachers.
1) Helps create a learner-centric environment:
For imparting education to students, it is significant to create a learner-centric environment. With the help of ICT, teachers can provide a better understanding of concepts and can also challenge students’ knowledge and thinking through individual or group discussions. This learner-centric environment in the classroom will make learning enjoyable.
2) Change teaching practices:
ICT helps teachers modify their traditional methods of teaching and evolve as a teacher. This not only helps in the overall development of teachers but also makes the learning easy and interesting and, as a result, improves students’ performance.
3) Helps in information presentation:
The use of ICT tools such as LCD projectors, television, electronic whiteboards, the internet and others help in the proper presentation of information. Such tools make teaching easy and provide students with a better understanding of complex concepts.
4) Helps in professional development:
Getting their hands on ICT tools help in the professional development of teachers and also help upgrade their teaching skills by using innovative teaching techniques. This also provides teachers with profound knowledge about the subject they are teaching and promotes effectiveness in the classroom.
5) Helps in preparing for lectures:
Using tools like a spreadsheet, database, word processing etc., teachers can prepare their lectures in advance and promote effectiveness in the classroom. Apart from the bookish knowledge, teachers can expand students’ knowledge and understanding with the help of computers and the internet.
Information and communication technology are not only crucial for teachers but are also equally important in education. Both students and teachers need to develop a critical understanding of ICT. Listed below are a few points stating the role and importance of ICT in education.
Importance of ICT in Education:
1) Easily accessible to all:
ICT in education allows easy accessibility to all learners without any geographical barrier. The students can learn new things and expand their existing knowledge at their comfort through tools like computers, the internet, television and others. With the help of ICT, even the less privileged people can have access to education and enhance their learning.
2) Develop ICT literacy and capability:
With the advancements in technology, the future generation must be tech-savvy. One of the best ways to develop a critical understanding of ICT is to use tech tools in learning new concepts. ICT also helps in the development of high-order thinking and reasoning skills in students.
3) Encourages Collaboration:
ICT encourages collaboration as students work collectively on projects. It also enhances students’ communication skills as they talk, discuss, share knowledge and learn together.
4) Motivates learning:
ICT persuades children towards learning and acquiring knowledge. Children tend to learn better with technology as they get fascinated with technology tools and are motivated to learn efficiently and effectively in class or at home.
5) Improves Knowledge retention:
The things that are taught via games or movies tend to last longer in the memory. With the inclusion of ICT tools in education, children get more involved in learning and show greater class participation. The teachers can make their sessions fun-filled and creative with the help of technology to enhance learning in multiple ways, which results in better knowledge retention.
Components of ICT
Four main types of communication technology have contributed to the ease of sending messages: telephone, radio, television, and internet.
A telephone is a device that facilitates verbal communication. With the help of telephones, people can interact with each other from different places in the world. Telephone acts as a mode of verbal, visual, and written communication by providing facilities to call, text, and much more.
Radio is another means of verbal communication. It is used to interact with people on a larger scale. Radio is used to transform the information delivered to large audiences and continues to strengthen mass communication.
Television serves as a form of visual communication. Various television channels are used to provide information on various topics like art, history, etc to a large population.
The Internet is one of the most common ways to communicate. It serves as a form of both verbal and nonverbal communication. The Internet is a platform used to communicate and interact with a large number of people.
ICT comprises the internet enabled sphere and the mobile one powered by wired networks. It consists of various technologies like telephones, radios, artificial intelligence and robotics etc.
ICT is really beneficial for businesses due to the conveniences it provides. It helps in cutting costs by defining a highly automated business process. It helps in turning vast troves of data into insights which helps drive new products and services.
The methods of imparting education have evolved. Information and communication technology (ICT) plays a significant role in education as it helps teachers adapt to the changing times, effectively disseminate knowledge to the students and develop a critical understanding of ICT.
Therefore, the teachers should be well-versed with technology to make the future generation learn using ICT tools like computers, tablets, desktops, the internet, telephone, and others. The use of technology while teaching will make the learning experience fun and result in better knowledge retention. It is therefore very important to develop a critical understanding of ICT.
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