This post will look at the hype cycle, disruptive technologies, and the implications of cognitive load theory.
Above is a graph of the hype cycle, which basically highlights the stages that technology goes though. Jumping onboard with a technology too early could be a detriment, as it might not work as expected. As you can see in the graph above, the slope of enlightenment is when the technology (if it is successful) becomes understood and people start to use it in a beneficial way. From this, it would be wise to use technology in the classroom when they are in the productivity stages, as there is knowledge of how to implement the technology effectively.
You may notice that I linked to a Wikipedia article above and wonder “what in the world is this university student is thinking”. Wikipedia is an example of a disruptive technology, however, you may be wondering what a disruptive technology is. A disruptive technology is an innovation that creates a new market with new values that unexpectedly overtakes an existing market. Wikipedia is a disruptive technology that impacted traditional encyclopaedias, and has evolved to being a very reliable source of information.
Check out this YouTube video for more engaging explanation.
Implications of Cognitive Load Theory
When it comes to using technology in the classroom, it is worth while to know some cognitive load theory. A good example of this is using powerpoint in the classroom. Suppose you are lecturing a class and you have the written text up on powerpoint for the class to read a long with. That is actually bad use of technology, as people will only focus on one (voice or text). 1+1=0 in this case, as they cancel each other out. Instead, you should use only one medium unless you only use the powerpoint for visual aid and emphasising certain words from the lecture/speech. Similarly in music education, playing music with a score on the projector (or screen) will have a similar effect.
As an extension to this topic, when designing websites or technological resources, you should take the “F-Shaped pattern” into account. Basically, everything up the top left is seen first and scanned to the right, and then each time you look down, you scan to the right even less. This knowledge is applied to my blog’s main page, as the most recent articles are up the top and easy to see. Head over to this article for further explanation.