Technology in the Classroom

I never considered how fundamental technology is to the current student. Technology is used so fluidly that it is often surpassed until our computer crashes or deletes that assignment you spent several hours working on! As a student, I gather about 65% of my research, questions, and further inquiries from a search engine rather than a textbook or contacting a professor. Technology serves as a present figure in the room and an essential asset to professors. It not only offers efficiency, but it gives students a new approach to learning the material. There are several ways that I would incorporate technology into a course.

Initially, I considered the development of the student and how they could gain a better understanding of the information I was providing. Then I considered how technology would help build innovation and growth for the overall field of psychology.  In this paper, I will share two examples of the first perspective, then share examples of the other perspective. I will conclude with the limitations of technology, and the importance of being mindful of the harm technology can also bring. 

Concerning the student’s development, I find that by recording lectures, students who are unable to be present or miss a key concept can have an opportunity to review the lecture. Students who struggle with keeping up in class or require a longer processing speed to grasp concepts fully should have an opportunity to learn not only in the class but also outside of the classroom.

Developmentally, this generation requires a different form of support than past generations. I want students to have access to the lectures in the future. Another developmental consider ration is the difference in a student’s ability to write vs. speak.  I find value in being able to eloquently voice perspectives and thoughts in a manner that is clear. Just as I would have students write reflections, I would have them share a reflection through voice recording as well. Some students may prefer this style overwriting. Overall, there is an essential benefit in learning to communicate appropriately and effectively. Communication is fundamental, and students will be able to practice a variety of ways to communicate their point of view. 

With regard to the field of psychology and students research, I considered virtual reality, microphones that record interactions and behaviors, video conferencing, and global learning. Before I explain further, I would like to mention that the use of these technological advancements would be explicitly used in the classroom as a teaching tool. When considering virtual reality as a technological advancement to education, I place precedence on the therapeutic space. Allowing students to practice with simulated clients or patients would help gain confidence in their ability to counsel.

Often, I hear that students are uncomfortable taking the first step in practicing and the anxiety of “knowing” what to say deters them from being their genuine self in the room. If they were given assimilations and practice rounds before working with an actual classmate or peer, this could increase a student’s confidence, preparedness, and experience in counseling. Virtual reality could also enhance how students make sense of historical figures who shaped the perspective of a given field. For instance, Freud’s ideology of psychology and how his interpretation of behavior and how the selfemerged is substantial. However, if he could speak in present-day and students could engage in his process that would ultimately change the way our current generation views psychology. 

Next, recoding behaviors and interactions through a form of technology (microphone) could offer real-time intellectual connections. Students would be able to become more aware of how they interact with other people in their lives and then get an opportunity to observe themselves. This way of using technology would work well for multiculturalism, cognitive thinking paths, and overall wellness courses. In the realm, considerations for consent and safety is essential, but with a research context, it truly does make way for learning about the self and the interactions humans face daily. 

Video conferencing is something that I would also incorporate to help my students understand the importance of building a connection (networking) within our field of psychology. I had a professor Skype a colleague from Arizona while we were in Pennsylvania, she discussed the process of licensure within her state. It was helpful to see how practitioners in our field rely on one another for support and guidance. Technology is helpful in the sense that it has reduced the difficulty in connecting with people who are not exactly in the same space as we are. Guest speaking could be done remotely and increase the number of outside sources who could influence our students. In connection to video conferencing,  global learning is another consideration. Many organizations conduct vast trainings and exploration in areas outside of the United States. Global learning could open a way for students to gain immediate feedback and experience with understanding how other cultures experience life — like a virtual field trip. Students often are unable to afford study abroad programs, and this could potentially make way for a more straightforward way of learning about other cultures and other cultures learning about the students in America. 

Technology is a fascinating addition to our current educational system, and studies have been conducted to explain the benefits of it. However, technology can also be destructive and used as a way to undermine the principles of education as well as psychological advancement. For example, s student who continuously misses class, so they can utilize the recorded lectures. This concern is something I would need to consider when offering this service because student engagement is undoubtedly necessary when facilitating a classroom. With any technology, it is essential to leave space for technological glitches, crashes, and importantly power outages.

Teaching does not cease because technology does not work. For every technological service I provide to students, I must have a non-technological version to suffice and continue the lecture. At one point in time (not too long ago), we did not have the technology we currently hold, and learning was just as substantial.

With Intention, Sarafina