Diversity and Inclusion: The role of edtech

On the topic of education technology, digital skills and developing knowledge of STEM subjects are usually amongst the most common benefits that come to mind. Edtech is proven to improve student outcomes in relation to attainment, but something that is talked about less often, is how edtech has the ability to allow us to become even more interconnected and socially aware.

Pearson’s Diversity and Inclusion in Schools Report (2020) found that 80% of teachers surveyed believed more can be done to celebrate diverse cultures, people and experiences in UK education.

For many years, technology has provided us with insights and different perspectives on topics such as identity, religion, race and other protected characteristics. From the early days of television to the growth of the internet, people have been using technology to enhance their social awareness. This remains the case today, with social media also playing a huge part in promoting diversity and inclusion.

Through using education technologies effectively, we can continue to embed diversity and inclusion into learning. From strong representation of people from diverse backgrounds in resources, to using edtech to support students with additional learning needs, edtech has a pivotal role to play.

We must continue to strive to create equal opportunities for all learners to have successful learning experiences that underpin attainment. This has to be deep rooted in learning but technology has the power to broaden resources and access to valuable learning experiences.

Here are 4 ways you can continue to incorporate diversity and inclusion into your lessons through the use of edtech:

  1. Apps and tasks that encourage participation and sharing of experiences
  2. Accessibility tools such as screen readers or visual aids
  3. Representation of diverse backgrounds in learning through online resources
  4. Specific online resources that champion diversity and inclusion

Of course it is worth mentioning a significant part of the diversity and inclusion agenda is about how the education sector progresses with narrowing the digital divide. Equity and access issues remain a challenge that the education technology industry and organisations like Naace continue to advocate. Naace takes pride in supporting schools to create edtech estates that work for individual schools and their learners through its Self-Review Framework.

Diversity and inclusion are undoubtedly complex matters with many factors, we are merely scratching the surface in this blog but would encourage educators to continue promoting diversity and inclusion in their classrooms through using edtech to broaden learning horizons.