The Fourth Industrial Revolution: Technology and Education
The convergence of data, computation, and globalization in education has far-reaching consequences for educational stakeholders, institutions, and learners. Terms such as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, artificial intelligence (AI), exponential technology, deep learning, personalized competency-based learning, and distributed ledger technology networks (DLTNs) are indicators of the changing dialogue between education stakeholders, businesses, and government aspirations on a global scale. Location-independent virtual environments promise an exponential expansion that goes beyond brick-and-mortar schools, colleges, and universities. AI and intelligent systems are poised to become global change agents in education, ushering in profound changes in administrative functions, strategic planning, data aggregation, student acquisition and retention, and alternative currencies, as well as curriculum design, assessment, personal learning networks, and global competitiveness generally of both institutions and their graduates. The quality of the education a nation’s schools, educational institutions, and teachers provide, along with investments in science, technology engineering, and mathematics education, directly impact economic prosperity and global competitiveness.
This paper explores some of the interdependencies that arise from supercharged technological advances such as AI augmented reality digital technologies (ARDTs) and DLTNs and their possible impact on education, educators, learners, and society. In addition, it unbundles the meaning and use cases of AI, ARDTs, and DLTNs in education.