2011 Horizon Report Released

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The 2011 Horizon Report was released few days ago. The annual Horizon Report describes the continuing work of the NMC’s Horizon Project, a research-oriented effort that seeks to identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have considerable impact on teaching, learning, and creative expression within higher education. Like the reports published in previous years, the 2011 Horizon Report describes six areas of emerging technology that will have significant impact on higher education and creative expression over the next one to five years. The areas of emerging technology cited for 2011 are:

1. Electronic Books (1 year or less)

2. Mobiles (1 year or less)

3. Augmented Realty (2-3 years)

4. Game-based Learning (2-3 years)

5. Gesture Based Computing (4-5 years)

6. Learning Analytics (4-5 years)

The following key trends and critical challenges are discussed in the executive summary.

Key Trends:

  • The abundance of resources and relationships made easily accessible via the Internet is increasingly challenging us to revisit our roles as educators in sense-making, coaching, and credentialing.
  • People expect to be able to work, learn, and study whenever and wherever they want.
  • The world of work is increasingly collaborative, giving rise to reflection about the way student projects are structured.
  • The technologies we use are increasingly cloud-based, and our notions of IT support are decentralized.

Critical Challenges:

  • Digital media literacy continues its rise in importance as a key skill in every discipline and profession.
  • Appropriate metrics of evaluation lag behind the emergence of new scholarly forms of authoring, publishing, and researching.
  • Economic pressures and new models of education are presenting unprecedented competition to traditional models of the university.
  • Keeping pace with the rapid proliferation of information, software tools, and devices is challenging for students and teachers alike.

The 2011 Horizon Report can be downloaded at:

http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2011-Horizon-Report.pdf (1.6Mb, 40 pages)

Also, you can view and comment on the Web version of 2011 Horizon Report at:



About Steve Yuen

I am a Professor Emeritus of Instructional Technology and Design at The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, United States.
This entry was posted in Future Technology, research and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to 2011 Horizon Report Released

  1. Linda Bourland-Wynn says:

    This is a fascinating article. I found the breakdown of the six emerging technologies to be quite interesting, and it seems to fall in line with what we have covered in 780. E-books for example are noted at 1 year or less. As we covered mobile devices and hand held technology, it is easy to conceive that e-books will become very popular. In addition to the convenience, I think (and hope) higher learning will adopt e-books as a way to help mitigate rising tuition costs. Augmented reality and game-based learning have a 2-3 year forecast and this is amazing. When I watch the videos on this blog about AR is still looks completely “science fiction” and to think that it may be implemented into education in just a couple of years is very exciting. I was surprised to see game based learning at a 2-3 year forecast. I’ve had a video game platform all of my life and in 1987 there were plenty of word based and math based games on Atari. Recently, I was playing Final Fantasy 10 on my PS3 and the puzzles and problem solving built into that game was astonishing. Keenon and I play collaboratively as well and I know that entertainment is the purpose, but games are getting so sophisticated and asking more and more of their audiences, I just assumed the education factor was inherent. The games with a basis of education rather than entertainment seems like it would be a small shift in emphasis, since there are plenty of games on the market that actually make you use your brain.

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