The Concept of Convergence as it Applies to ICT

Raja and Singh (2010) defines convergence as it pertains to ICT as “the erosion of boundaries between previously separate ICT services, networks and business practices.” Many technologies have converged in recent times to form single devices which has the advantages of separate technologies (EDTK 2030, unit 1). These devices can be seen in the school environment and can possess great benefits, aiding in the field of communication, provided that the implementation of these devices lack certain impediments such as traditional views, untrained staff and inadequate financial resources.

Technological innovation in the classroom is fast becoming the norm as digital devices are being utilized daily for various educational purposes.  For example, at my practicum site, I have seen the laptop being used frequently by the teacher to conduct all of her activities as the children had the advantage of experiencing visual and audio, catering for their different learning styles.  I also saw the tablet being used very conveniently in the outdoor area as it was easy to carry around and which provided typing as well as stylus functions.

There are a few institutional factors which can impede the implementation of technology in the classroom. One of them is that administration may not consider the use of it a priority as they may choose to maintain the traditional ways of instructing with the belief that they have functioned very well thus far without it. 

Another impediment is the absence of trained teachers in the field of technology. Although teachers may desire to implement a vast array of technology into their classrooms, they may not be prepared to efficiently instruct students on the proper use of the devices so that they can receive the full benefits of them.

Financial inadequacy can also pose as a hindrance in the implementation of technology in the classroom. Most often, administration and staff may be very open minded and willing to introduce technology to students to assist in their knowledge of it and to help them stay abreast of what is happening around them but are faced with financial burden causing a great obstacle in their path to advancement in that area.

Boundaries are continuously being eroded in the field of technology for purposes such as convenience and better communication and educational institutions are incorporating such technologies as they converge to make good use of the advantages, however, the presence of impediments can pose as a setback to enjoying the full benefits of the convergence of technologies.

References

Singh, R., and Raja, S. (2010). Convergence in information and communication technology: strategic and regulatory considerations.  Retrieved from http://elibrary.worldbank.org/doi/book/10.1596/978-0-8213-8169-4

EDTK 2030. Information and communication technology in education. Unit 1 (2014). University of the West Indies Open Campus.

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