Digitizing Education: National Geographic at The Atlantic’s Technologies in Education Forum

As part of its “Intelligence Series” of conferences, the Atlantic Monthly, one of the nation’s longest-running publications, held a forum on Tuesday to discuss the future of technology in education. Hosted at the Gallup Building in Washington, D.C., the Atlantic convened nonprofit, industry, and government representatives for the day to exchange thoughts on the role of educational technology in preparing students for employment in high-tech sectors, as well as more narrow topics, such as game-based education.

Four representatives from National Geographic Education attended the event, adding thoughtful commentary and analysis to the discussion, which I will share with you in this post. NG Education staff noted various main takeaways from the day, including, but not limited to, individualized educational experiences, teacher training, the digital divide/app gap, edutainment, and use of appropriate platforms.

Individualized Educational Experiences
Technology presents an opportunity to create individualized educational experiences, bringing a 30:1 student-to-teacher ratio as close as possible to individual tutoring. By using the latest technology, teachers can differentiate between advanced students and slower-paced learners in their classes, assigning them different exercises based on their skill level. Students are challenged with educational programs that target their specific weaknesses (i.e. targeting verb conjugation with one student, while focusing on noun practice with another).

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