Ed­u­ca­tion, Tech­nol­ogy, and So­cial Re­spon­si­bil­ity

Ka­mal Puri, Founder Pres­i­dent of Sky­line Uni­ver­sity Col­lege, talks about how tech­nol­ogy changes the land­scape of ed­u­ca­tion and how aca­demic in­sti­tu­tions must use their tech­nol­ogy and re­sources to give back to so­ci­ety.

Forbes Middle East - - THOUGHT LEADERS -

Re­cently Bos­ton Dy­nam­ics, a U.S.-based en­gi­neer­ing and ro­bot­ics de­sign com­pany, cre­ated At­las—a 1.5-me­ter tall hu­manoid ro­bot that can jog, walk and even back­flip. Hong Kong-based Han­son Ro­bot­ics de­vel­oped a ro­bot named Sophia in 2016. Through ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence, vis­ual data pro­cess­ing and fa­cial recog­ni­tion, Sophia im­i­tates hu­man ges­tures and fa­cial ex­pres­sions. She was even granted Saudi Ara­bian ci­ti­zen­ship in 2017, mak­ing her the first ro­bot to have a na­tion­al­ity.

Tech­nol­ogy is chang­ing what it means to be hu­man. It is chang­ing the dif­fer­ent as­pects of our lives. It is chang­ing how we learn and trans­form­ing the land­scape of ed­u­ca­tion.

With the ad­vance­ment of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, the shar­ing of data among re­searchers, an­a­lysts and aca­demi­cians is way eas­ier than be­fore. Through the in­ter­net, learn­ing re­sources have be­come more ac­ces­si­ble. In the past, only a few could ac­cess re­search works. To­day, how­ever, any­one can ac­cess in­for­ma­tion at any time and from any­where. Mas­sive amounts of in­for­ma­tion are avail­able in just a few clicks and in var­i­ous for­mats such as videos, e-books and au­dio­books, among oth­ers.

Uni­ver­si­ties are now build­ing dig­i­tal li­braries that hold a col­lec­tion of doc­u­ments, books, jour­nals, mag­a­zines, ar­ti­cles and news­pa­pers or­ga­nized in an elec­tronic for­mat and ac­ces­si­ble any­time and any­where. Learn­ing also be­comes more ef­fec­tive. Ac­cord­ing to stud­ies, we re­mem­ber only 30% of what we see and 90% of what we do or sim­u­late. By in­te­grat­ing vir­tual re­al­ity in class­rooms, learn­ing be­comes more im­mer­sive and ef­fec­tive.

Tech­nol­ogy is rev­o­lu­tion­iz­ing ed­u­ca­tion. Need­less to say, the fu­ture of ed­u­ca­tion is clicks and not bricks. And with the fast de­vel­op­ment of tech­nol­ogy, the fu­ture is ar­riv­ing sooner than we think.

It is the duty of aca­demic in­sti­tu­tions to pre­pare the younger gen­er­a­tion for the tech­nol­ogy-en­abled fu­ture and em­power them with skills to ex­cel in the dig­i­tal age. Aca­demi­cians must not for­get, how­ever, that more than teach­ing the young gen­er­a­tion to ex­cel in the pro­fes­sional world, their greater re­spon­si­bil­ity is teach­ing them to ex­cel at be­ing hu­man.

As we tread the path to a tech­nol­ogy-driven fu­ture, we face mount­ing calls to make greater con­tri­bu­tions to so­ci­ety. With tech­nol­ogy comes the re­sources to an­swer the plight of hu­man­ity and aca­demic in­sti­tu­tions are in the po­si­tion to give back to the so­ci­ety. Schools and uni­ver­si­ties must, there­fore, com­mit to us­ing their tech­nol­ogy, man­power and re­sources in mak­ing so­ci­ety bet­ter. They must em­power their em­ploy­ees and stu­dents to lever­age their re­sources to do good for so­ci­ety.

We have to make sure that in mak­ing tech­nol­ogy more hu­man, we are not los­ing our hu­man­ity in the process.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.