Who will teach in the 4.0 industrial era?
VietNamNet Bridge - Who will teach students in the digital era, teachers or high-tech robots?


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This was a question raised by Ha Van Thang, a lecturer in the geography faculty at HCM City University of Education, who spoke on the role of young teachers in the 4.0 industry period at a forum held in late March.

Nguyen Lac Hoa, who introduced herself as an accountant, said that in the technology-led era, everything will be developed on the basis of technology, from lesson plans and teaching aids to curricula, and teaching methods which will be customized to fit every student.

“If you need some information, you’d better look it up on internet rather than ask teachers, because machines can give answers more quickly than teachers,” she commented. Hoa feared that technology would be a wall separating students and teachers.

Thang agreed, predicting the presence of a ‘third person’ in the student-teacher relationship.

Teachers use lesson plans professionally designed with support of software, reveling in using online connection apps, computers and smartphones. This will generate a wall between teachers and students.

Teachers use lesson plans professionally designed with support of software, reveling in using online connection apps, computers and smartphones. This will generate a wall between teachers and students.

“The ‘third person’ is technology,” he said. “This is like in a family, where parents and children sit together, but a tech gap exists.”

Teachers in the 4.0 era must have technological capability. The lesson plans created with support of technologies can attract students and have high value. The new general education program has put emphasis on promoting students’ technological capability. 

However, Thang said that lessons without technology are better.

“When there is no computer or projector and no worries about technical issues, I find teaching very comfortable. The lesson time seems to be longer and I have more time to care about students. The distance between us doesn’t exist and the days become emotionally rich,” he said.

Thang believes that teachers will still play an important role in future education. “Technology won’t be able to replace teachers in spreading values to students. Teachers will always be in a unique position,” he said.

Nguyen Thi Bich Hong, a lecturer at the Psychology Faculty at the HCM City University of Education, said “the real teachers’ function of education will never be lost”.

According to Pham Do Nhat Tien, an education expert, there are four stages of education development. The 1.0 education aims to prepare the labor force for industrial production. The 2.0 stage shifts from one-way education to interactive learning. With 3.0, people study all their lives to update knowledge. 

It is now the fourth stage of education development: lifelong and personalized education which prepares people for innovation and creativity.


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Kim Chi

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