COVID-19 as an opportunity for innovative and creative education

By Kilryoung Lee | 기사입력 2020/11/26 [14:35]

COVID-19 as an opportunity for innovative and creative education

By Kilryoung Lee | 입력 : 2020/11/26 [14:35]

Kilryoung Lee is a professor of Department of English Education in the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies. He earned his doctoral degree in TESOL from the State University of New York at Buffalo, USA. He had taught about four years in Ewha Girls’ High School before he went to study abroad. He has been in charge of National Performance Contest of Secondary English Teachers. His main academic interest is Teacher education and Listening and Speaking.  – Ed

   The COVID-19 has resulted in schools shut throughout the world, affecting more than one billion children and sixty three million teachers. With this pandemic, education has changed dramatically: e-learning has swept in to make us enter a "new normal," and teaching is undertaken remotely and on digital platforms.
   As full-scale e-learning has begun in Korea with the sudden shift away from the classroom to online learning, learners as well as teachers seemed to feel uncomfortable in this drastic change. However, it should be noted that we could use this challenge as an opportunity. While some may believe that the rapid and unplanned move to online learning along with lack of training, insufficient bandwidth, and little preparation will be unsuccessful, others believe that a new hybrid model of education will emerge. For example, Wang Tao, Vice President of Tencent Cloud and Vice President of Tencent Education, says "I believe that the integration of information technology in education will be further accelerated and that online education will eventually become an integral component of school education."
   As a matter of fact, it is said that, as long as learners have access to the right technology, learning online can be more effective in a number of ways. According to World Economic Forum in 2020, some research shows that on average, students retain 25-60% more material when learning online compared to only 8-10% in a classroom. This may be because learners are able to learn faster online. The Forum argues that e-learning requires 40-60% less time to learn than in a traditional classroom setting because learners can learn at their own pace, going back and re-reading, skipping, or accelerating through concepts as they choose.
In the pandemic period are presented diverse new ways, one of which is High Touch High Tech (HTHT) model put forth by Ju-Ho Lee in a recent webinar of Global Future Dialogue about New Normal and the Future of Education. It is worthwhile to introduce HTHT model, with the hope that the unprecedented education experience caused by COVID-19 can serve as a springboard for an ideal model in the new normal.
   In the webinar, Lee argued the HTHT featured "a personalized educational experience through an AI-assisted adaptive learning system (High tech) that reduces the burden of teachers, thereby allowing them to focus on individualized, active, and higher-order learning for students (High-touch)". 
As seen in Figure 1, the stages in Bloom’s Taxonomy can be divided into two categories: 'Remember' and 'Understand' in one category called 'High-Tech Learning with Adaptive System', and 'Apply', 'Analyze', 'Evaluate' and 'Create' in the other category which is 'High-Touch learning with teachers'. Generally the two stages 'Remember' and 'Understand' in the bottom are easily practical goals in the traditional classroom instruction, and teachers rarely lead the students up to the next category.
  However, in the new way of teaching and learning, the lower category can be conducted with online learning with assistance of AI adaptive learning technology. This will lead teachers to concentrate more on the upper category with personalized guidance. As a result, teachers can perform their mission more effectively by not only delivering knowledge in the lower category but also facilitating human connection in the upper category. 
The COVID-19 has affected an education system waking up from conventional ways of teaching and learning. The pandemic will be a catalyst to create new and more effective ways of educating students. HTHT can be one of the new ways to make this crisis to be an opportunity for all of us.

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