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Regardless of the framework, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are at the core of 21st century skills. In “Learning 21st Century skills requires 21st-century teaching,” Anna Rosefsky Saavedra and V. Darleen Opfer, encourage adult educators to not only teach technical skills, but also exploit technology to further support learning. They argue technology offers the potential to support the development of other skills, like communication, problem solving, and critical thinking, while allowing students to practice transferring skills in differing contexts. For Saavedra and Opfer, technology has not yet lived up to its great promise for education, “in part, because teachers have not had the opportunity to learn to maximize its pedagogical value” (p. 12).

This is precisely the case in art history classrooms. Of the 21st century skills, I am most interested in how I can utilize tools for working, to flip the classroom and move away from a lecture based mode of delivery. By assigning digital resources such as the Khan Academy for viewing outside of class time, I can utilize our weekly meetings for more project-based learning, where I can work closely with students either in groups or individually.

In more effectively using technology, I hope to further develop the student’s other 21st century skills. For example correctly using digital databases opens up an overwhelming access to information. Critical thinking skills are required to sort through the information to determine what is of value. For art historians viewing in the 21st century, developments in Information and Communication Technologies will have a profound impact on the ways we look, research, write and ultimately share our ideas.

Rosefsky Saavedra, A., & Opfer, V. (2012). Learning 21st-century skills requires 21st-century teaching. Phi Delta Kappan, 94(2), 8-13.

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