EdTech,  Technology

The Advancement of Technology in Classrooms

Computers are machines of information, and thus are inevitable vessels of education. This is why, at some point, the computer, no matter how exclusive its use had been, would eventually find itself in the classroom. The road to the advancement of technology in classrooms, and in education in general, has been set with milestones. Its history has its share of leaps, steps, and perhaps also a few setbacks, as it goes from giant mainframe systems to the portable and easily accessible Chromebook that you have today.

The earliest time that computers have been seen used in educational establishments was during World War II, when computers were used by universities, particularly in the United States, to aid in the war effort. However, such machines were not used as educational tools until 1963 when the Vocational Education Act enforced the use of technology in schools and other similar establishments.

Fast forward to 1971; Intel developed the world’s very first microprocessor. This started an eventual boom of smaller, more compact computers that are designed and optimized for office use, but still not for the classroom. Schools would still have to wait at least until 1975 when the first Apple I PCs were introduced for classroom use.

The event that sparked the educational revolution in schools was the introduction of the very first Apple Macintosh in 1984. Borrowing different innovative concepts from other developers at the time, Apple Macintosh introduced the idea of a GUI, a graphics user interface, to the public for the first time. This made computers widely accepted in many institutions, especially in work and education establishments. For the first time, students in computer rooms were now able to use PCs for visual learning programs.

Today, almost two decades after the dawn of the 21st century, we are now in a tech era where gadgets are portable and easily affordable. The use of computers in education is now a critical part of society today. The rise and prevalence of handheld computers such as smartphones and tablets have helped support the rapid circulation of digital information. Most importantly, the optimization of computers for the Internet exponentially improved information accessibility for students. One simple example is how schools have started to use Chromebooks to take advantage of efficient online Google Apps for the setup of cloud-based learning systems. Thanks to these web-centric innovations, the computer is now largely considered as the standard medium of education.

In the future, more innovations and breakthrough concepts might yet again reshape technology and education. As to what exactly they might bring to the students of tomorrow, no one exactly knows. However, our progressive march towards globalization through the use of computers could give us hints to the next big idea.

The internet is home to thousands of images and videos showing just how far we have come. But this video truly captures the excitement of the earlier days of computers. The crowd is literally going wild as a young Steve Jobs shows off Apples latest creation.

Christian Crisostomo

Contributor at Kami
Christian Crisostomo

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