The digital age, education and work: details of a transformation
Currently, technological advances have influenced practically all levels of our daily lives. The technological revolution is evident in our daily lives to such an extent that not a day goes by without us being in contact with a technological device. Thus, the workplace and education have not been exempt from having technological influences.
In this article we tell you how the digital age is transforming education and work in the world.
Foundations of the digital age
The digital age, or the Fourth Industrial Revolution, is considered to have started in the 1980s. As such, we evolved from analog electronic and mechanical devices to today’s digital technologies. This progress is characterized by advances such as miniaturization, nanotechnology, quantum computing, and telecommunications.
Digital technologies today exhibit transformative breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, machine learning, massive data processing, robotics and biotechnology.
Some analysts claim that we are already on the brink of a post digital era. In it, technology creates a world of deeply personalized and instant experiences. There, organizations must be able to take advantage of these opportunities in people’s daily lives. In addition, they need to be ready to effectively address critical issues such as privacy, security and ethics for its users.
How the digital age has changed education
It is no secret to anyone that education has had an enormous transformation from the implementation of technological tools. Before, when we talked about education, we immediately thought of the physical classroom. However, today when talking about education it is inevitable to think about the Internet and digital media.
Already in 2015, the European Parliament signed that education in the digital age is more aboutcreation of knowledge, and less of its mere acquisition. Today, online training and its different applications, such as e learning platforms and communication software, promote existence of learning communities outside the confines of physical classrooms, educational institutions, countries, and generational groups.
For the institution, technology in education and its transforming power in the European Union is made visible in three ways:
- Internet and telecommunications. It manifests itself in Open Educational Resources (OER) such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) and other forms of e learning.
- One to one and multimedia tools, such as electronic devices and digital educational materials.
- Technologies that improve the knowledge of teachers in the individual and group performance of their students.
Technology for educational innovation
In the digital age, technology has made education more:
- Personalized, with the use of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT, its acronym in English) and data analytics. Educators can better understand what students know and need. Thus, training becomes more effective and efficient.
- of immersion Extended reality tools (virtual, augmented and mixed) create opportunities to learn by doing.
- Accessible. More people can be educated through e learning because of its low cost. Also, thanks to the autonomy of this remote training, students can create their own study plan, adapting to their needs.
How the digital age has changed work
From the declaration of the state of alarm by COVID 19, to a third of Spanish employees have teleworked. While before, people who worked from home were not more than 10% in the country.
The rise of telecommuting in Spain and the world highlights the transformation that the digital age has brought about at work. According to the science hub of the European Commission, the main changes are:
- New technologies that reform jobs. On the one hand, millions of jobs are at risk because of automation. While, on the other hand, technology creates new types of work and changes what people do in their jobs and how they do it.
- Soft and digital skills are more necessary. The vacancies that demand them tend to be better paid. In addition, the fastest growing occupations in the European Unionsince 2011, require ICT skills above the average and are for social interaction.
- technology drives new forms of employment, allowing remote work and creating job opportunities, such as outsourcing platforms. However, it can also promote the de standardization of labor relations.
Based on the above, you have to ask yourself about the next steps. The Das Progressive Zentrum and Policy Network think tanks highlight the importance of:
- Educate to achieve job profiles that combine specific vocational skills with transversal skills such as literacy, the use of mathematics in daily life, adaptability and problem solving.
- Develop ICT skills generic (use of technology in daily work) and specific (programming, development and administration).
- Recognize the risks and opportunities of automation. While employment in certain sectors will decline (such as manufacturing), it will rise in others (such as IT and education). Human labor will be needed more in non routine and creative tasks.
In conclusion, the digital age has immensely transformed the development of work and educational processes. The technology is advancing by leaps and bounds and with it all areas of human life. Therefore, it is necessary to be constantly updated to keep up with the great changes in the world and its development.
Header image by Gonzalo Chavarri.