Ed Tech Year in Review – 2017

Wow! What a year in the Ed Tech Realm.

I have to brag that I published two books in 2017:

FAIL TO PLAN, PLAN TO FAIL – How to Create Your School’s Education Technology Strategic Plan

Click Here to buy on Amazon

And a non-technology book called, BACKSTAGE – Behind the Curtains with the Greatest Entertainers of the 20th Century. Written with Marty Harrell.

Click Here to buy on Amazon

Now let’s get back to business.

Top Ed Tech Trends from 2017:

  1. 3D Printers –  I know, This is just classroom technology. But if you went to any education conference this year, 3D printers seemed to garner the most eyeballs and had the best tchotckes. However the next one is specifically connected to this….
  2. Makerspaces – not only does the development and construction of makerspaces mark a milestone in technology planning, the facilities modifications, moveable furniture, 3D printers and associated software presented a monumental challenge to those trying to define technology standards for schools.
  3. LMS Ubiquity – Finally we are seeing almost every school have some platform for Learning Management. Whether this is de jure or de facto, many initiatives are being led from the groundswell of need. Schools ahead of the trends are insuring effectiveness and standardization through professional development. Access via student devices, home connectivity and BYOD policies are making LMS systems more viable than ever.
  4. Collaborative work – although Group Work is not new by any means, standardized platforms such as GAFE and MS365 have eliminated the technical obstacles to collaboration. Not only are they standard via the web, but also free (for the most part). These barriers have made the implementation of group work in the classroom a matter of the teacher’s ability to move their curriculum to a group work model.
  5. Digital Citizenship – finally being adopted as serious curriculum, net ethics and digital citizenship are fully the responsibility of the the sponsor (school) and must be first established and then enforced. Don’t try to create rules and regulations unless you (at the school or district-level administration) are ready to define and impose restrictions, and enforcement.
  6. Technology-based curriculum – in the dark ages we had typing, drafting, woodshop and home economics. Then through the 90’s and early 2000’s we saw the educational trends lose its vocational training focus. Now with renewed focus on pathways and CTE programs we see a resurgence in technology-based curriculum: Coding, Robotics, and Web Development courses offer opportunities and pathways that challenge students as soon as they are ready to attempt them, even in elementary grades. Only now faculty are ready for them too!
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About Darryl Vidal

Darryl Vidal has been consulting for schools implementing technology for over 20 years. His projects include district-wide implementations of VoIP, Wireless, Data Center Virtualization, and Video Security. His primary instructional focus for over 15 years has been the ever evolving technology classroom. Mr. Vidal has developed the formal strategic planning and project management methodology known as MapITsm. He is currently the Vice President and principal Education Technology Consultant for Southern California-based technology firm Networld Solutions, Inc.