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Positive Effects of Technology on Education: Make a Bigger Impact

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Education has been opening doors to professional and personal growth for centuries, but not for everyone. Therefore, an increasing number of education organizations are tapping into the positive effects of technology on education, realizing that choosing the right tools and methods can be a game-changer for students that have been previously marginalized.

To get organizations ready to expand their impact next year, today’s article is all about how technology has improved education and the wealth of options available to easily make a bigger difference.

How Has Technology Improved Education?

As you review with us how technology has improved education, list down ideas your university hasn’t adopted yet, and start dreaming big about how your team can scale its impact in the next decade.

One of the first thoughts that come to mind when talking about how technology affects education is often about the almost unlimited access to knowledge. Instead of sticking to books they can physically carry, or the ones that happen to be available in nearby libraries, students have complete abundance at their fingertips with ebooks and audiobooks, giving them great options to buy and to rent, and a lot less back pain.

Of course, virtual books are just the beginning, as knowledge is available online in a variety of formats. MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) enable free access to courses. Podcasts, videos and blog posts from both education organizations and other sources are a click away and cover every topic imaginable. All these options, combined with a wide range of discipline-specific tools, make it easier for education organizations to open the door to experiential learning, where students no longer need to wait for graduation in order to go beyond theory.

In addition, students gain deeper access to another important learning resource: their own peers. A key positive impact of technology on education is that it brings students together through discussion and collaboration tools, who might never have considered, or had the opportunity, to communicate or help each other offline.

 

Improved Teaching Operations that Encourage Collaboration, Efficiency, and Diversity

This last positive impact of technology on education is relevant for professors as well. Professors can use online collaboration tools and course management tools to organize student materials and give students feedback. This makes it easier for professors to keep track of student performance data and evaluate trends over time, in order to see what aspects of the course need to be changed.

Technology helps professors get support, too. For example, when professors find themselves facing tech challenges in the middle of a class, they can reach out to IT digitally. IT can then connect to professors’ computers remotely and solve the challenge quickly, instead of wasting half the class in an attempt to overcome it. Professors can also collaborate with fellow professors and faculty members, to ensure the department keeps moving toward its goals.

When it comes to team management, technology enables faculty members to ensure equality in opportunities. At the brink of the third decade of the 21st century, more and more diversity and inclusion software products aim to help management recruit and promote with less unconscious bias.

 

The Rise of Accessibility and Assistive Technology is Opening Doors to Student Populations Who Were Previously Left Behind

One cannot really talk about how technology affects education without talking about accessibility for sectors of the population that were previously left behind. This is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting positive effects of technology on education. For blind students, the technology converts slides and texts into electronic Braille, and audio recordings of classes provide another option. Similarly, video recordings of classes provide hard of hearing and deaf students with the ability to access lectures as well. In this case, captions are added to the video, of course. With artificial intelligence software, captions can be provided quickly and accurately. The software produces captions within seconds or in real-time, allowing students to keep up with the class. Human transcribers review the captions and edit them for deeper accuracy. This feedback is then used to train the software better about topic-specific terms and events, turning the process faster, more cost-effective and more accurate over time. Alternatively or in addition, classes can be transcribed and presented to students in text-only format. Artificial intelligence academic software is available for transcriptions as well, operating in the same way it does with captions.

Either way, the ability to access course materials in multiple formats and participate in courses via multiple channels allows both students in wheelchairs and students dealing with physical and mental illnesses to continue their education. While it’s easier to hide, many students face mental illnesses that make it challenging to get out the door, sit in packed classrooms or participate in conventional ways, even if their grades depend on them doing so. Step by step, technology helps them reach their education dreams, too.

  

Distance Education and E-Learning that Enable Creative Collaborations and Learning Experiences

Besides making education accessible to students dealing with disabilities, distance education and e-learning technology open the door to students who would otherwise not be able to afford higher education. Whether they can’t afford to move near their desired university, can’t afford standard tuition and textbooks, or need to work a full-time job or taking care of family members, and therefore need a more flexible schedule, technology opens the door for them too. Distance education and e-learning also make it much easier for people who have graduated with a BA or MA to continue their education, whether for professional development or simply for personal joy. But the positive effects of technology on education don’t end here. Technology enables education organizations to partner with each other, and to easily bring professors from other universities to teach their students, despite geographical distances that would otherwise require more availability from the professors and higher costs for the organization. A professor can record a class from her home in Alaska, and it will be screened in New York. Similarly, a hospital can partner with a university and bring cameras into its operation rooms, so med students and medical device engineering students could see (almost) firsthand the professional world they’re about to enter. To expand experiential learning, universities can connect students with real-life people who will be impacted by their future work, and can give them insights that a textbook can’t. When training social workers, for example, universities can host a video conference with people who have grown up in foster care but are not able to come into the classroom, to share their stories. The impact of technology on student learning, and what students take with them as they enter the workforce and shape the country’s future, is abundantly deep.

Commit to Making an Even Bigger Impact on Education in the Next Decade

Now that education organizations have seen how technology has changed education positively, it is understandable to feel hungry for more. The timing couldn’t be more perfect for universities to look for ways to expand their impact, as we enter a new decade. Bringing representatives from multiple departments together, universities can strategize goals for every department, and for the organization as a whole, and start turning it into a game plan. If all this is possible on the brink of the 21st century’s third decade, imagine where we could be in 10 years. Your university can be the leader of this transformation.

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Transcription Rates & What Must Be Included in the Price

In today’s world, organizations are inundated with a wide variety of transcription rate structures, which makes it challenging to compare one service provider from another. Therefore, the following quick guide is all about the most common payment structures, what transcription rate per minute and transcription rates per hour organizations can expect to pay, plus what exactly goes into those rates, so you can ask the important questions and choose transcription service providers that actually offer the best service for the best rate.

 

How Transcription Rates are Structured & What Prices to Expect

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the different structures of transcription rates in today’s market. To make it easier, the following are the common rate structures, and what organizations can expect to pay.

 

Common Transcription Rates Per Audio Minute

“Transcription rates per minute” is a common rate structure. Expect to pay $1-3.5 per minute. However, just because minute rates are quoted, it doesn’t mean an organization now needs to track its transcription service providers’ work minutes. Instead, what this rate structure talks about is how long the audio or video file is. When transcription rates are presented “per minute,” the intention behind them is “transcription rate per audio minute.”

 

Common Transcription Rates Per Service Hour

Unlike “per minute” rates, transcription services rates per hour represent an hour of a transcriber’s work. That rate varies extensively. The lowest we’ve seen was $15/hour, and the highest was $50/hour. It’s important to note that transcribers cannot transcribe a full audio hour in one hour of work. For a full audio hour to be transcribed, organizations would need to book a transcriber for four to 10 hours.

 

 What Impacts Transcription Rates: Important Factors to Consider

When comparing transcription rates of different transcription service providers, understanding what’s included in the price can help make decisions that fulfill the organization’s specific needs more accurately.

 

Transcription Rates vs. Turnaround Time

Transcription services rates are often impacted by turnaround time. It’s not rare to see the price increase the faster an organization needs the transcription submitted, with same-day submission being the highest rate. Many factors can impact the turnaround time. Mainly, how long it actually takes to transcribe accurate audio. Expect to pay different rates to individual transcribers, agencies and software companies, as each option offers different turnaround capabilities. This recent article is a quick guide to help organizations navigate the industry, but as a best practice, it is recommended to compare turnaround times alongside transcription rates when choosing providers.

 

 Transcription Rates vs. Transcription Quality and Accuracy

Of course, turnaround times, like transcription rates per audio minute or transcription services rates per hour, are easy to figure out. Either a company lists its standard rates online, or an organization submits an audio file for a rate estimate. But this is where things get more complex. As explained in the guide mentioned above, turnaround times, and therefore transcription rates, are often impacted by the audio’s quality. If an audio file is in poor quality, if it contains obscure industry terms, or if there are multiple speakers with similar voices, it will likely take longer and cost more to transcribe it. However, this, more than ever, is when an organization would be wise to prioritize the quality of the transcription. It is important to compare how different transcription service providers verify the quality of the transcription, including its formatting, its grammar, and perhaps most importantly, its accuracy. Even if audio files are in high quality, if transcribers are not familiar with industry terms and relinquish research time to save organizations money, or don’t proof and edit their work, it could have a critical impact on the meaning of some sentences, and of readers’ ability to gain clarity and make good decisions based on the transcription.

 

 How to Reduce Transcription Services Cost Without Compromising on Accuracy or Turnaround Times

Unfortunately, while most organizations understand the need to ensure transcription quality and accuracy, many have budget constraints and attempt to reduce transcription services cost in order to stay within their budgets. Fortunately, as technology evolves, organizations are finding that they no longer need to sacrifice quality, accuracy or budget. An increasing amount of transcription service providers manage to reduce their transcription services rates by automating certain processes of their operations. Automatic sound recognition (ASR) is a great example of that, as it is a type of software many uses now to easily distinguish between a variety of voices found in a specific recording. Instead of listening to the recording countless times, doubting one’s self, and playing it backward and forwards, transcribers now let the software figure out which speaker is which. But the most exciting development in this field is, undoubtedly, the introduction of artificial intelligence (AR).

 

The Most Exciting Technology that Reduces Transcription Services Rates Without Compromising on Quality or Accuracy

Artificial intelligence software products not only include automatic sound recognition within them, but they basically do transcribers’ work for them. Yes, the software transcribes audio and video files on its own, automatically. Of course, for that to happen, software developers teach the software anything from industry terms to current events. For accuracy, the smartest companies actually don’t submit the transcript right away, even if it’s ready instantaneously. Instead, they let a human being review the transcription first, so the human being can make any necessary changes, and the organization can receive a 99% error-free transcription. Those of us who are especially passionate about accuracy have two human transcribers review every software-produced transcription, and transcription rates are still lower because work time is significantly reduced. In addition, the longer an organization collaborates with a company like that, the lower its transcription costs are because the human transcribers’ feedback is embedded in the software. The AI transcription software learns from its mistakes, and makes fewer errors over time, reducing human editing time even more.

 

Yes, You Can Have Your Transcription Cake and Eat it Too

When searching for transcription service providers, it’s important to understand what goes into their transcription rates. A below-market transcription rate per minute doesn’t sound as great when the organization realizes it’s gotten a non-proofread, non-accurate transcript, with industry terms and speaker names mixed up. But as technology progresses, organizations no longer need to sacrifice accuracy for their budget or spend more time in meetings trying to convince management to increase their budget. With the introduction of artificial intelligence to the transcription industry, organizations regain their power and enjoy the best of both worlds.

 

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