After Online Education

In the following video, Derek Muller, a physics professor at the University of Sydney in Australia, explains the history and future of educational technology. 

Despite the failure of past predictions, I believe education will, in the next few years, go through a paradigm shift as drastic as the move to Online Education has been.

The potential for Youtube to alter the current educational landscape is apparent to anyone with an internet connection. The number of educational videos available on the site is expanding every day, and the range of subjects covered provides an opportunity for real autonomy.

In order to create effective videos for this platform, Dr. Muller offers some advice:

  • Studies have shown that learning with words and pictures together works better than words alone, so video is an effective option in education.
  • Removing extraneous distractions from the video, such as text (even if it mirrors the dialogue) will prevent the viewer from receiving the video’s message.
  • What really matters in education is what happens in the mind of the learner, so create videos that promote meaningful thought processes.

But, what I believe will really revolutionize education is the effort Youtube has recently made towards developing 360 videos. These videos will best be viewed in virtual reality systems, such as the Oculus Rift, Gear VR, or Google Cardboard. You can see an example here: 

These systems will provide our students with immersive experiences that will help them learn our curriculum in a way that is intrinsically motivating. They will help educators to create experiences that will facilitate meaningful thought processes in our students. They will provide opportunities to learn autonomously by linking to videos with similar content, and mastery by diving into each subject in greater depth.

I predict in the near future, instead of Online Education, we will be discussing and developing content for Virtual Education. As Professor Muller said, “(Because) Any experience can be simulated in the video setting, Youtube must be the platform that will revolutionize education.”