FREMONT, CA: The widespread use of technology has made institutions worldwide acknowledge the need for incorporating it in teaching and learning. Student engagement and self-learning are the significant outcomes that have attracted the considerable interest of its users. Self-directed learning is a type of education in which learners are allowed to work on tasks and problems on their own choice and provide learning support in context to their problems. Beyond the traditional classroom, technology can support lifelong, self-directed learning.
There is a significant surge in the use of ICT in education, promising to spread knowledge among masses across the world. Due to the ready availability of ICT powered tools, self-directed learning can be enhanced. The backdrop of self-directed learning has changed with online learning, access to technology, personalized education, and access to substantial information sources that previously were not available. Institutions are recognizing the value of self-directed learning and are encouraging their teachers to facilitate it in the classrooms. There are several tools and strategies in which technology supports learners in self-directed learning.
To this end, online learning exposes students to a wide variety of information resources available online which they can learn on their own pace. Online learning enhances the effectiveness of student learning. There are open educational resources through which students can learn any subject they want and eliminates the constant need for an instructor. With video conferencing, tools students can connect with resource persons and discuss topics of their interest. Apart from various resources available online for learning the provision for self-assessment is also available where students can assess themselves by doing practice tests instead of relying on a teacher.
Technology has important implications for the development and support of self-directed learning. It offers unlimited access for learners to connect with experts, explore topics of their interests take part in opportunities and events across the globe. Technological innovations also provide novel ways to modernize classrooms, facilitating greater flexibility to learners to organize their resources, adapt to their learning styles, and study individually or collaboratively.