November 28, 2013
If you have been following the recent developments in technology, you may have heard the buzz which surrounds the implementation of Google Fiber, a new technology which is changing the face of educational research.
What is Google Fiber?
To put it in basic terms, Google Fiber is both high speed Internet and a television service that is offered in different plans and service levels. Right now, some people are still paying one service provider for Internet and another one for cable television. Google has decided to get in the game with innovations that are not offered by other providers.
Right now there are three possible plans:
1) You can pay the $300 installation fee for Google Fiber and you receive free unlimited Internet for life, which operates at 5Mbps for download and 1mbps for upload or,
2) You pay no installation fee and then $70 per month per gigabit Internet and a Google Fiber router capable of handling this type of broadband speed. Gigabit means that the speed of the download is a whopping 1000Mbps for both download and uploads speeds.
3) You can opt to receive everything from plan 2 plus Google TV high definition 1080p service, along with a Google box and TV remote.
Google Fiber is All about Speed
Many educational institutions are working to get on the request list for Google Fiber not because of the convenience of Internet and TV service from one provider, but mainly because of the rates of broadband speed which can revolutionize education and educational research.
Here are a few scenarios:
Many schools are unable to offer advanced curriculums or AP courses. Additionally, there are a lot of organizations out there that provide instructional videos for advanced classes all the way through to college and advanced college courses. With access to extreme high speed Internet, students can engage in distance learning classes using interactive applications which would otherwise be impossible with slower broadband speeds.
In another scenario, schools that have implemented the National Geographic curriculum will have the opportunity to communicate with scientists that are doing research all over the world. With faster Internet speeds, students can engage in research through video chats as well as share and exchange a lot of the research they do along with the research conducted by others. The interaction with other researchers can be seen in live footage which provides advanced collaboration with other classrooms in various locations around the world.
Google Fiber will also be extremely helpful in making sure we are able to get information not only into schools, but into homes where children may not be able to attend school. Google Fiber represents an opportunity to bring the information directly from the source into the home of each and every student and their families so that they can learn and do research together.
Google Fiber and Educational Research
Google Fiber represents a revolutionary step in the evolution of the Internet particularly as it relates to bringing the last mile of high speed Internet to educational institutions and the home environment. This represents the kind of leap which encourages research and innovation. It is hard to imagine all the things you can do once you have the high speed connection Google Fiber promises however, it is easy to envision using it for educational research.
Google Fiber is all about faster speeds plus, it is also about creating a new imagination for what can happen in terms of educational research. It represents a whole new way of thinking, collaborating, and sharing information which greatly enhances educational research and innovation. A powerful scenario is related to educational institutions in the health care industry.
In terms of educational research for the health care industry, medical schools have multiple purposes which include education, discovering new knowledge, and providing service to patients across the world. Google Fiber would have the potential for tremendous impact in all three of these areas in terms of lectures, slides, videos, and all of the information on the Internet which makes it readily available around the world.
Right now, the limitations are related to bandwidth. This means that Google Fiber would allow educational institutions in the health care industry to take full advantage of the technology that is available in the classroom and make it available for research across the world.
In terms of partnerships, Google Fiber provides the ability to partner with other educational institutions around the world. This would allow access to content that certain institutions may or may not have the expertise to provide at this time. Google Fiber represents a glimpse into that future for education and research.
By using Google Fiber, educational institutions and researchers can exchange information and research so that medical students can learn more about treatments for diseases which are present in other parts of the world. Using the conventional lab research environment, this would be virtually impossible unless you are willing to travel to other areas of the world to become educated on various illnesses.
This type of educational research made possible with Google Fiber is beneficial for patients who travel and can be potentially exposed to these diseases. It also provides medical students with a global-based education and solid foundation for research.
Google Fiber also represents an opportunity for educational research to move from a conventional single lab environment to a much more team-based and collaborative setting. This means that communication and sharing of information becomes ever more important as it is brought to the forefront of educational research.
Educational institutions are also in the process of establishing co-laboratories that act as coalitions. Unlike traditional models, the alliances are researchers that are linked by technology on an ongoing basis and currently reside in different areas of the world. This type of collaboration is made possible through new technologies and the high speed connection of Google Fiber.
As technology improves and Google Fiber becomes more prevalent, it offers the opportunity to be able to link researchers with their subjects in addition to the individuals who are participating in experiments, lab projects, and other opportunities for educational research.
Guest author Sameer Bhatia is founder & CEO of ProProfs.com which is a leading provider of online learning tools for building, testing, and applying knowledge. Through its eLearning Development tools, ProProfs offers trainers and educators powerful-but-simple features without requiring users to download or learn expensive software. Sameer has a background in technology with a Masters in Computer Science from USC (University Of Southern California) and is an ed-tech industry veteran. You can find Sameer on Google+ and Twitter.
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