How Google Glass can revolutionize learning


From a teaching perspective, seeing things through the Google Glass lens can bring new opportunities for teaching and learning.

google-glass-moocsIn tomorrow’s future, students and teachers will not always need to sit in the classroom with paper and pen, but maybe as co-participants in an online MOOC, like those provided by Coursera, using wearable technology like Google Glass.

As a MOOC participant, I put on my Google Glasses, and say, “OK Glass.” At my computer I Google the words “professor,” “Dr. Chuck,” “(#IHTS),” “YouTube,” and instantly begin watching his video.

Or, I can make a call, compose an eMail, post a Tweet, or join a Google Hangout to meet up with the professor. Exploring new educational spaces like MOOC’s are, in my view, relevant teaching and learning opportunities especially while wearing Glass.

From a teaching perspective, seeing things through the Glass lens can bring new opportunities for teaching and learning. For a few examples, teachers, in a traditional/flipped/hybrid classroom, can use Glass for instant facial recognition of students, reading student’s eMail or tweets posted on a class’s Twitter feed.

(Next page: Using Google Glass in the MOOC environment)

In my opinion, exploring emerging tech has an alluring, enticement, and a motivational factor for further exploration, study, observation, and analysis.

Keep in mind, teachers don’t need any access at all to a physical computer. Glass will not replace a computer but enables the teacher with instant interactivity with online social apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, et cetera. Research is also needed to discover and investigate Glass’s reliability and measurable value.

Libraries, like Yale Library in Connecticut, have already embraced Glass, and exploration in higher education is notable. Perhaps like astronauts exploring space for the first time, educators are exploring Glass, hoping to make a difference in the world by discovery.

When seeing the Earth from the astronauts’ point-of-view, it was breath-taking.

Hopefully, the benefits of being an early Glass explorer will situate me to have 20/20 – a more focused vision and engagement for teaching and learning using wearable technology. For two months, I have gained a new perspective using Glass with a MOOC – an experimentation that aligns with a current shift in online learning and hybrid pedagogy.

On this new journey, as a new explorer, I hope to add value to this adventure in teaching and learning using Glass in the MOOC online environment, composing daily tweets and various online collaborations.

Remembering that the gift of hindsight is always 20/20, I envision a future with wearable tech as enlightening as the first moon landing. Well, perhaps not as important, but significant nonetheless with respect to all early explorers of wearable tech and a MOOC. A Glass of MOOC might be worth looking at more closely.

Roxann Riskin is a technology specialist/supervisor at Fairfield University.

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