The NMC and the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), with the support of HP, released the NMC Horizon Report > 2014 K-12 Edition at a special session at the 2014 NMC Summer Conference in Portland, Oregon.
This sixth K-12 edition describes annual findings from the NMC Horizon Project, an ongoing research project designed to identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have an impact on teaching, learning, and creative inquiry in education.
Six key trends, six significant challenges, and six emerging technologies are identified across three adoption horizons over the next one to five years, giving school leaders and practitioners a valuable guide for strategic technology planning. The format of the report is new this year, providing these leaders with more in-depth insight into how the trends and challenges are accelerating and impeding the adoption of educational technology, along with their implications for policy, leadership, and practice.
Key Trends Accelerating Educational Technology Adoption in Schools
The NMC Horizon Report > 2014 K-12 Edition identifies “Rethinking the Role of Teachers” and the “Shift to Deeper Learning Approaches” as fast trends accelerating the adoption of educational technology in K-12 education over the next one to two years. The “Increasing Focus on Open Educational Resources” and the “Increasing Use of Hybrid Learning Designs” are mid-range trends expected to accelerate technology use in the next three to five years; and the “Rapid Acceleration of Intuitive Technology” and “Rethinking of How Schools Work” are long-range trends, positioned at more than five years away.
Significant Challenges Impeding Educational Technology Adoption in Schools
A number of challenges are acknowledged for presenting barriers to the mainstream use of technology in K-12 education. “Creating Authentic Learning Opportunities” and “Integrating Personalized Learning” are perceived as solvable challenges — those which we both understand and know how to solve. “Complex Thinking and Communication” and the “Safety of Student Data” are considered difficult challenges, which are defined as well understood but with solutions that are elusive. Described as wicked challenges are “Competition from New Models of Education” and “Keeping Formal Education Relevant,” which are complex to define, much less address.
Important Developments in Educational Technology for Schools
Additionally, the report identifies BYOD and cloud computing as technologies expected to enter mainstream use in the first horizon of one year or less. Games and gamification and learning analytics are seen in the second horizon of two to three years; The Internet of Things and wearable technology are seen emerging in the third horizon of four to five years.