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Tuesday, December 06, 2022

Technology as an Engine of Better Education

According to the AIM, Argentina has 13.2 million children and adolescents, and although it is among the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) countries with a very high Human Development Index (HDI), poverty affects 57 percent of people under the age of 18. . , Despite the existence of public policies at all levels of government, the great differences between the country’s federal structure and subnational governments make it difficult for children and adolescents (NNyA) to achieve equal rights.

Access to quality education is one of the rights that allows children to have more and better opportunities for their lives. In this sense, the ecosystem of actors working to ensure this is increasingly diverse: states, companies and civil society organizations work so that in addition to access, technology is also a tool for access to other rights.

“The current school proposal goes far beyond young people’s interests, discoveries, methods of communication, and construction of knowledge. This experience of cultural disagreement makes it difficult for students to discover the deeper meaning of learning. Students need school proposals those that give them prominence, to develop the skills and learning opportunities necessary for autonomy and life, within the framework of a collaborative, open and digital culture”, Luciana Alonso, director of the Utopia project, told AIM.

There is a need for rapid, multidisciplinary and multi-sectoral policies and approaches. In this way, it is possible to generate a support network that allows not only to meet the basic needs of this population, but also to build a network of growth and full childhood development.

gaps and inequalities of concern

Connectivity is one of the important aspects in terms of infrastructure for the development of educational and service offerings. According to the country’s Ministry of Education. At present 15,954 schools are connected through the National Plan for School Connectivity (PNCE), of which 6,780 are primary, 4,660 are secondary, 2,875 correspond to the elementary level and 1,639 belong to other institutions. In this way they ensure that 50 percent of all students in the country today are connected to the Internet.

However, the latest survey presented by UNICEF shows that between 2021 and 2022, the number of households that do not have a computer or tablet for homework dropped from 42 percent to 26 percent and from 30 percent to 8 percent. There is no cell phone in the same period. However, one in four households do not have any equipment available for homework at home.

The same survey noted the impact of this pandemic on learning: 50 percent of households believe that children and adolescents will meet current levels of learning with less learning than they should have achieved. 33 percent say that their sons and daughters will see their future performance as affecting students. And 50 percent of teens indicated that education was scarce this school year.

opportunities for the future
The Argentine Chamber of Software Industry (SECI) has reported over the years that the country has 5,000 unfinished jobs in the IT sector. However, he warns that if IT positions in other sectors of the economy are considered, this figure will rise to 15,000. Despite this deficit, the knowledge economy is the third largest export sector in Argentina.

In this sense, today’s world needs to take into account technology and its impact on all social, educational and productive sectors. There are more and more initiatives across the region that call youth into STEM careers (science, technology, engineering and math). If we take the latest enrollment data for courses at the University of Buenos Aires, it can be seen that computer engineering, which was ranked 18th in 2016, entered the top ten most chosen courses in 2022 . Not counting population growth, 755 people signed up to become computer engineers in 2016, while 1,776 did this year. That is, an increase of 135%.

But these efforts of various public and private administrations of the countries do not seem to be sufficient. For this enrollment growth to continue, it is essential that businesses are formed through family involvement and participation from an early age, in the early and primary periods of school, and in the earlier stages of boys at home. And the girls are learning.

“It is important to raise awareness among young people about the importance of strengthening hard science teaching, as they hold the keys to humanity’s present and future. The development of STEM skills should be a permanent agenda item, as should new ways of learning. It is necessary to seek out what brings children and teenagers closer to numbers, than a more engaging and fun place”, comments Nicolas Schenkerman, Regional Matific Manager of Latin America.

For his part, Educabot CEO and co-founder Matias Scovotti points out that technology is advancing and presents us with a future full of no limits and challenges. “STEM education assumes an increasingly central role in the future. Incorporating it into the classroom in an integral way gives new generations the opportunity to meet the challenges of new educational and work paradigms,” he says.

In order to learn more and better, it is also necessary to change teaching strategies and strengthen the link between schools and families. In this sense, new teaching methods based on simplified technical tools are in vogue with excellent results.

“With platforms like Matific, parents can quickly gain insight into tracking their child’s math progress in real time, both in-app and online. Families can select the option from the platform that matches their child’s grade or level, and automatically, the application will display the appropriate content as per the study plan. Family members who accompany and/or monitor their child’s activity in the application do not need to know or possess a high level of math, as these games are customized and the generation of individual game routes for each child allow”, he highlights. Carolina Canosa, head of marketing LATM at Matific.

From classroom to systemic improvement
But it is not only about using technology as a tool to develop skills for the present and future, but also to improve the design of policies that address the current problems of childhood.

“Today we are passing through a challenging reality and members of the educational sector must strive to be a support in the challenges to come. One of the most important is to create conditions for improving the quality of learning, and better than technology Who is there to provide the much-needed support,” said Collegium CEO Ariel Gringos.
Without going further, Gringos explains that technologies allow us to make timely diagnoses and thus allow us to make timely corrections and decisions to help improve the quality of learning for all children. “The data is then available to detect patterns and predict trends to level up learning processes so that no student lags behind in their studies.”
bridge the gap

We are not only talking about improving learning or interventions through technology, but also about the gaps that we need to solve in order to create a fair society. According to a United Nations survey, by 2050 75 percent of jobs will be related to STEM sectors. Yet today women hold just 22 percent of AI jobs, to name just one.

What is the central axis in this gap? “The issue lies in the social barriers that women face since childhood, i.e. family and social stereotypes, which are presented before and during career choice. Recognize that this gender gap exists. This is the initial kick of change. This , because stereotypes exclude women from a segment such as science and technology, which creates value, job opportunities and greater potential for economic growth,” said Mikaela Unamuno, operations manager at Educabot.

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