Personalized Learning – Powered by Data

One of the most exciting concepts in the world of mobile learning is the idea of personalized education. Personalized learning is a widely (and variously) used term, but generally refers to providing students with an individualized educational experience, as opposed to following a one-size-fits-all lesson plan. Technology is a tremendous tool in realizing this goal, and will open entirely new avenues for educators in the near future.

The U.S. Department of Education, using “competency-based learning” interchangeably with the concept of personalized learning, offers a compelling definition for this movement that speaks to the opportunity for educators and students alike:

Transitioning away from seat time in favor of a structure that creates flexibility allows students to progress as they demonstrate mastery of academic content, regardless of time, place, or pace of learning. Competency-based strategies provide flexibility in the way that credit can be earned or awarded, and provide students with personalized learning opportunities. These strategies include online and blended learning, dual enrollment and early college high schools, project-based and community-based learning, and credit recovery, among others. This type of learning leads to better student engagement because the content is relevant to each student and tailored to their unique needs. It also leads to better student outcomes because the pace of learning is customized to each student.

Ed.gov also offers examples of successful personalized learning programs at both the state and district level. Read more about these programs here.

As Karen Cator, the former director of the Office of Educational Technology of the U.S. Department of Education, said at the White House’s Datapalooza event last year, data is the “rocket fuel” powering personalization in education.1 Information about student performance is being collected and evaluated constantly, giving teachers the ability to track progress on a granular level. This data can be as basic as attendance records, or as complex as averages of student success over time, arranged by subject matter or lesson type. No matter how it is used, this data-driven approach will support an education which accommodates student needs, freeing students from rigid educational structures that do not fit their learning styles.

The opportunity for resellers here is that schools will need a way to store, manage, and interpret this data. The Douglas Stewart Company offers a variety of solutions that you can offer your customers to get them rolling with a personalized learning program. Check out our mobile learning portal for solutions from Symantec in our Security category, and Absolute in our Mobile Device Management category. Data backup, device identification, confidentiality measures, and more are included in these tools – contact your Account Manager today to see how your customers fit into our mobile learning ecosystem!

  1. “The uncomfortable truth about personalized learning,” Gigaom.com, http://gigaom.com/2013/09/02/the-uncomfortable-truth-about-personalized-learning/.

 

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