Published: 04th January 2021
The future of EdTech: How 2021 will bring in flexibility, affordability and faster tech adoption in the education sector
Education, globally, is becoming modular, multimodal, gamified, flexible, accessible and affordable. 2021 is going to bring in positive momentum in faster tech adoption
It’s true that COVID-19 has brought online learning to the forefront of education revolution – what might have taken a decade has happened in 6 months. Education is seen as a path to prosperity; technology solves the problem of access to quality education, and coupled with rising incomes is driving an increase in demand for online personalised education. The pandemic induced lockdown provided a fillip to online learning – it helped country’s 15 lakh schools and 25 crore students maintained some semblance of continuity in learning. While 2020 has been a great year when EdTech made significant strides in the teaching-learning processes, 2021 is going to be a significant upgrade.
1. Online Distance Education
The pandemic propelled online distance education as the top EdTech trend of 2020 and it is expected to maintain its momentum in 2021 as well. The flexibility and convenience of platform-driven online learning provided a respite to several learners who did not want to miss a full academic year.
2. Multimedia Assisted Learning
Institutions and platforms are increasingly resorting to the use of multi-media and video-based content to engage their learners. Nicely created videos, punctuated with animation and interactivity caught the attention of the learner and have provided better outcomes than textual content.
3. Big Data is getting bigger
Data-driven technology allow for personalisation of individuals’ learning needs as data can show where students need support; educators have relevant information about learners’ experiences to customize and present the course in a suitable format.
4. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI is now mainstream in EdTech and is predicted to grow by more than 47 per cent in 2021. The ability of AI to automate several basic activities like grading, communication, solving student queries, providing student and teacher feedback, monitoring student and course progress help improve the learner experience.
5. Blockchain Technology
The ability of this technology to make data transactions decentralised and transparent while providing limitless encrypted storage spread across multiple computers is making it a preferred technology for online credentialing and e-portfolio management.
Institutions are increasingly using game theories to engage their learners –gamification facilitates learning and entertainment at the same time by using game mechanics like gathering points, getting badges, being on the leader-board or getting a trophy. This drives learner engagement, boosts retention rates and reduces the course dropout rates.
7. OPMs will play a big role as education expands online
More universities and institutions will seek the help of OPMs for launching degree and other learning programs to avoid massive investments in upfront infrastructure. Use of the services provided by established OPM players minimises the risk, helps adopt best practices, reduces the go-to-market time and make institutions more responsive.
8. Social Media in learning
Many educational institutes have started using social media as a communication tool in which students can interact with others easily. Students now share study materials, discuss with others in a group and easily comment on other’s post. Social media is here to stay while building a culture of collaboration and sharing.
Education, globally, is becoming modular, multimodal, gamified, flexible, accessible and affordable. 2021 is going to bring in positive momentum in faster tech adoption in education and help create more integrated, virtualised, gamified learning experience for learners and educator alike. Institutions must lean on technology to support them while they build efficient, transparent and accountable systems while providing the best in class learning and support services to the students; the need is both contextual and existential!
Shantanu Rooj is the Founder and CEO of Schoolguru Eduserve.