Learn how this new tech impacts your school
What is IoT?
IoT stands for the Internet of Things. It refers to a network of physical devices (other than the usual laptops, mobile phones, computers, etc.) that help integrate the physical world with the internet through the exchange of information. Essentially, it results in more seamless integration of every device around us with the internet and all its capabilities. Imagine your fridge telling you that you are out of milk and you then being able to tell it to order some more. Or even set up a regular schedule for the ordering and delivery of repeated items. This is possible through IoT, or Internet of Things. It is one step closer to living in the future we saw depicted in films.
Where is IoT usually used?
IoT has been used across industries and sectors, but one of the most visible uses of IoT so far has been in retail. Think of Amazon’s Dash buttons that allowed you to order more laundry detergent from the site at the literal push of a button. Or integrations into a Smart Home. But IoT is not limited to just ordering things off of the internet. It has seen an application in manufacturing, energy management, environmental monitoring, agriculture, medicine and healthcare, elder care, deployment at scale, and transportation.
How can IoT be used in schools?
The growing ubiquity of internet and technology in schools means that a development like IoT is not very far behind. But what could the applications of such tech be in your educational institution? Is this just a me-too gimmick used an excuse to raise infrastructure costs on the parents paying their wards’ school fees?
In short, no. IoT in education can be used in multiple ways to enhance the school experience – from teachers understanding the way their students’ minds work, thanks to devices that track how students are using classroom materials and sharing that data, to improved security and safety of scholars thanks to devices that radio logistical details during the child’s commute to school. IoT is a step towards removing barriers between the online and physical presence of stakeholders, in an effort to ensure that technology enhances the learning and teaching experience for all of them.
Why should I be using IoT at my school?
Internet of Things, or IoT, must be viewed not just as an add-on or perk offered to students who can afford it. It must be seen as a method by which students, teachers, parents, and non-education staff can have a seamless scholarly experience. This mindset change must take place in order to use IoT effectively and to its full potential.
How have educational institutions used IoT in the past?
A very obvious use of IoT that might already be in place in your school is the use of smart boards to connect academics and teachers all over the world. Highlights, annotations, and notes are available openly to anyone who is allowed access, enabling the free and open sharing of information and insights. This results in greater collaboration and enhanced learning for students and teachers alike.
We have spoken previously about the importance of student safety and campus security, especially in this day and age. This is an area in which IoT shines. IoT devices help parents, teachers and non-education staff help keep track of students while they are on institutional premises. This means a reduction in unexplained absences, ensuring that students are where they need to be, and a starting point to address any potential issues that may be the reason for the student’s presence (or lack of it) at a given place.