Friday, 2 March 2012

Horizon Report - 2012

Every January for the past 7 years I have eagerly awaited the publication of one of the most interesting 'future gazing' productions on the web - The NMC Horizon Report.

Produced by the New Media Consortium ( and Educause ( in a collaborative research project, the report identifies and describes six areas of emerging technology likely to have a significant impact on teaching, learning, or creative expression within USA higher education.

An advisory board and technology experts from around the world select technologies that fall within three adoption horizons: a year or less, two to three years, and four to five years. Each section of the report provides live Web links to examples and additional readings.

The 2012 report is available now as a 40 page pdf file from:

The report is full of fascinating insights covering:
  • Technologies to watch
  • Exemplar websites 
  • Significant trends
  • Critical Challenges

In 2008, a number of meta-trends were identified and I now keep a look out for new materials or methods that fall within these categories that still seem relevant 4 years on:

  1. Human/Machine Communication
  2. Collective generation & sharing of knowledge
  3. Computing in 3 dimensions
  4. Connecting people via the network
  5. Games as pedagogical platforms
  6. Shifting content production to users
  7. Ubiquitous platforms
 A brief summary of the selected technologies gives a flavour of what the panel feel are the most significant for Higher Education.

This table almost invites you to evaluate the 'adoption rate' for the panels selections.
I'm not so interested in that (although I can feel a topic for a future post coming on ...) but more in the process of reviewing where educational technology stands at the moment and where it might be going. More of a prompt for reflection than an attempt to predict the future (but I do agree with William Gibson: "The future is here. It's just not widely distributed yet").

I'm off now for a quite reflection (with report in hand).


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