As much as we'd like to toot technology's horns regarding the leap that it has allowed every field to take, one must remember what we're dealing with. It is estimated that about 1.6 million people would be substituted for machines, and that too would be done in a few years time. Yes, technology has taken us to greater lengths; we've been able to unlock hidden potential in the most mundane of tasks. From cars driving themselves, to the amount of calories we burn on a daily basis, technology has truly begun to control our lives. It tracks our every move, and helps us make the best decisions. What we're going to get into detail about is immersive technology, and if you're new here, do checkout other articles I've written regarding the immersive technology.
Immersive technology, in short, is technology that uses human senses of vision, touch and hearing, to 'teleport' you to another world, or improvise in the environment that you currently are in. Yes, I am talking about Augmented and Virtual Reality, which allow students to get a complete idea, if not dive deep into what they're learning. While augmented reality is used to superimpose characters or animations in the environment that you are present in, virtual reality uses gadgets to help you feel a part of a virtual environment that is created for a specific purpose.
We believe we're benefiting the future generations by providing them with the required tech to bring about creativity and innovation. Something we're also supposed to remember is that the technology we provide the younger generation, do come with a few cautionary disadvantages. Here's a list of 3 disadvantages that we should be wary of when helping our students discover and learn a subject through immersive technology.
It shortens our attention span. There was a famous report let out by Time magazine, that discussed the human attention span to be shorter than that of a gold fish. This change has occurred over the years due to the amount of time we spend in front of our screens. Microsoft tracked our average attention span from the beginning of the mobile revolution to 2015, proving that our attention span has shrunk by 4 seconds.
Cuts down our social skills as well. Wonder why you can't string a sentence together when it comes meeting someone or writing an email? Well, it's okay if you blame technology. Experts who keep a close eye on the younger generation say that technology is robbing them off their social skills. Many students who meet with these experts lack the social cues required for them to start or continue conversations. Technology immersion might have taught them a lot of things, but it is a poor substitute for real human interaction.
How much do you forget? In one study, researchers compared the brain scans of heavy internet users with those who use it only scarcely. Avid Internet users have noticed to have immense prefrontal cortex activity, which is a region in the brain known for short term memory. In fact, it was noticed to have double the activity as compared to other regions of the brain, and due to the immense activity in this region, the prefrontal cortex seemed flooded with information. And when it does decide to take a break, it should come as no surprise that we forget everything we've been seeing throughout the day.
Technology immersion is posed as a problem and a solution to many necessary changes taking place in the field of education. Without it, students would not be as keen on learning newer concepts and experiencing everything they learn. But, their brains become accustomed to the constant use of technology and digital learning platforms, and doesn't provide a solid ground for students to build their lives upon. We must consider what we're putting before the future generation, and at what cost will this development change human lives.