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YouTube for Learning: How Video is Changing the Education System

by SUMMIT on September 1st, 2015

YouTube for Learning How Video is Changing the Education System

Over the past decade education has embraced technology like never before. Bricks-and-mortar classrooms are opening up to rich media content, creative ways to deliver learning, and new student engagement models. Video is a massive force of change in today’s education scenario. Be it streaming, live, or on-demand, many schools and colleges are leveraging video in multiple ways to maximize learning outcomes. YouTube and online videos are in the game as well, and they are helping students in more ways than one.

Here’s a quick glance at how technology is affecting classroom learning.

Impact of Technology in Modern Classrooms

  • Video-enabled learning using both recorded and live video.
  • Learning Management Systems (LMS).
  • Use of collaboration platforms for group and remote activities.
  • Data Visualization/Big Data Analytics.
  • Gamification for hands-on training.

What is driving these changes? At the heart of tech-based learning lies the drive to make education appealing, interactive, and more beneficial for the modern breed of tech-driven students. Since traditional teaching methods struggle to engage learners who are deeply attached to their smartphones and personal devices, the trend is shifting towards educating them in the language they understand best—the language of technology. Challenges do exist because this is a huge undertaking for educators, and something they may not have envisioned for themselves.

A recent study found 78 percent of students prefer digital course materials over traditional textbooks. Smart classroom technologies, including interactive white board, audio-visual media, and student response systems are creating a better learning environment, and opening doors for educators to teach students in the way they learn best. Technology also expands the scope of learning outside the classroom, which is often more effective than classroom–only lectures. For instance, the Museum of Nature & Science in Dallas has collaborated with video service provider, Lifesize to build a special video conferencing field-trip program, which is available to almost 5,000 schools from all over Texas. This is also a great way to bring advanced education to students in isolated rural areas.

YouTube and Online Videos Put Learners in Control

When it comes to educational videos, nothing beats YouTube in terms of volume and variety. With more than 197 digital channels hosted by many premier educational institutions, YouTube has turned into the Holy Grail for millions of people across the globe looking for learning assistance.

YouTube videos offer learning experiences that can range from the intense—like videos of well-known experts providing rich insights on different topics—to basic math, science, or history lessons in a fun and interactive manner. Video can also support classroom learning by visually recreating what was taught. For instance, showing video-clips and film adaptations of lives and works of literary artists can be an excellent way to liven up a literature class. Vimeo and other video platforms offer similar benefits.

One of the best things about learning through online video is that students can learn at their own pace. Streamed videos can be easily accessed and viewed as many times as the students want.

The biggest challenge in using YouTube and other video sites is in preventing students from being exposed to inappropriate content. Parental control provides a child-friendly way to access YouTube videos, but educators need to be aware of the risks and educate themselves on the chosen technology so they have control over the content their students view.

Considering that 95 percent of American teens have internet access and get most of their news and information from online sources, it is no wonder that forward thinking educators have begun to embrace multimedia to enrich the classroom experience.

It is important that educators understand how big a role digital technology already plays in their student’s lives, and how layering the educational experience with multimedia will make both their job, and that of their student’s, a lot easier.

photo credit: YouTube logo via photopin (license)

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