Thursday, May 30, 2013

Google Glass in the Classroom

By Sean Scarpiello

In the past few weeks, Google unveiled the world to their newest innovation—Google Glass. Upon its introduction, I began thinking about how Google Glass could be used in the education field. Before Google Glass, the last innovative piece of technology to hit the market was Apple’s iPad and we have already seen just how successful it has been at improving education. While Google Glass is still being developed and has not been released for sale into the market just yet, we cannot say that it won't find itself in the classroom in the near future. Once the product becomes available to everyone and its cost drops significantly, there is strong potential for Google Glass to be used in the field of education.

If you haven’t heard of Google Glass, this new product looks like a pair of futuristic glasses with a single square glass just outside the normal frame of vision. Attached to the pair of glasses is a computer with a camera, recording device, and internet capabilities. On top of recording videos and taking pictures hands free, users can also look up information of the internet and translate foreign languages. This allows users to have the entire internet at their disposal without using their hands to search. Much like Apple’s Siri, users simply talk to Google Glass to carry out whatever function they need accomplished. As amazing as this device sounds, it is still very basic and currently doesn’t serve too much of an educational purpose. This, along with its $1,500 price tag, makes its future in the educational field sound far off. However, technology advances extremely quickly. When the iPad was first introduced, I never thought that it would be making its way into the hands of kindergarten students, so I am optimistic towards seeing Google Glass making its way into educational as well.

As of now, the current Google Glass would work well for students in that it allows students to record and take pictures of class material. Using a hands free device, students can record things such as full lectures, the process of completing math equations, and homework assignments. This puts students at an advantage because they can later go back and review a clear set of notes without having to carry around a backpack full of unorganized notebooks. Plus, students are able to control what they record, so students can customize their notes, making sure to focus on difficult class material in an in depth manner. Educators can use these same recording features to take a video of a difficult concept or take pictures of class announcements, then easily share them with the entire class. This improves communication between teachers and students. At any time or place a student can ask a question to the teacher who can easily and quickly respond to an individual student or the entire class.

For the future, we can expect to see the capabilities of Google Glass to expand well beyond what was recently unveiled. Students can go on field trips with their Google Glass and have historical facts pop up as they reach different points. Plus, there are sure to be other improved functions. Currently, the internet features appear to not work well in an educational setting. However, we can expect to see versions that are designed with students in mind and which include even more possibilities.

Overall, with the introduction of Google Glass to society, we can hope that within the upcoming years, Google Glass makes its way into the classrooms of America. While its current price tag and features may not be practical for the educational field as of now, we can expect to see its price drop and even more features crammed into Google Glass as technology quickly advances. When this product does come to fruition in the education field, we can expect to see huge changes in how students are educated and the benefits that will arise from Google Glass.

Google Glass:


Alisandra Wederich said...

I have a theory that as technology makes it easier and easier to carry around data rather than perform rote memorization, the education field will shift as a whole. When I was a child and I didn't know something, we had to take a trip to the library or a museum to look up answers. Now, we have the answers at our fingertips and can "Google," them, fact-check on Wikipedia, and cross-reference websites for the most accurate information. This is whey I see education changing. Instead of memorizing information, students will need to become more effective at organizing and properly utilizing that information.

donpk said...

Very good google glass...