Educational technology is defined as the use of computer hardware and software to assist with the formal learning process. EdTech is constantly evolving as new IT tools are adapted and updated, and teachers who welcome technology into their classrooms are at the forefront of the latest teaching era. Not only is it more engaging and fun for both the educator and students, but it also teaches essential life skills like collaboration and teamwork.

Feedback is arguably one of the most important resources in the education of a young mind. It helps steer them in the right direction and gives them new ways to reframe thoughts. On average, the typical educator endures an 11-hour day, which leaves very little time to dive into specifics. Mote enables teachers to take feedback to the next level while also saving time. Installed as a Google Chrome extension, Mote adds voice comments in the comment field of literally any Google classroom environment, including Docs, Sheets, Slides, or within Classroom itself. The commentary in the teacher’s own voice will mean so much more to the recipient, and verbal feedback is better understood than written, which can be open to interpretation. 

Another IT tool that educators are embracing is media literally and bias detection. In an age where any URL can technically be quoted as a source, it’s essential to confirm the authenticity and any conflicts of interest. In addition to unforeseen biases, algorithms that are based on students’ viewing history will automatically offer sources with similar leanings. AllSides is a media bias chart that runs the political gamut. The user types in a topic and is presented with opinion pieces and news articles that may or may not have a bias. Any course that requires source context would benefit significantly from this tool.

One of the latest tools available is learning about an object just by taking a photo. The concept of Shazam for the real world used to be a far-away dream, but Google Lens has made it a reality. The uses are endless. People can take photos of text for translation purposes, retail products for research and purchase, landmarks for historical information and hours of operation, restaurants to peruse menus and reviews. The app will also read its findings out loud for accessibility purposes.