Expectations In 2020: Education Reforms And Key Role Of EdTech As Enablers
2020 will be an opportunity for the EdTech players to emerge as leaders and play a key role in revolutionising our education sector.
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The aim of our education policy has evolved from focussing on improving literacy levels in the post-independence era to now providing quality, accessible and affordable education to the future of our country. This challenge was also addressed by the EdTech industry in 2019.
Owing to the accessibility of affordable internet, the EdTech industry was able to expand its reach in Tier 2 and 3 cities. Education became affordable, interactive, engaging and allowed students the freedom and privacy to learn at their convenience from the comfort of their homes. This acted as a catalyst to the evident shift in exam preparation preference, where a majority of students opted for live online classes (if they have access to) as compared to offline coaching, as indicated by a nationwide survey done by Gradeup. As a result of tremendous growth in the EdTech industry, the investment rose close to 250 million with companies such as Gradeup, Vedantu and Unacademy receiving funding. This was a testament to the growing trust and acceptance by the investors and consumers in the Edtech industry and this has helped transform the education sector in India.
Moving forward in 2020, armed with recent funding, there are new challenges that EdTech entrepreneurs must now focus on, which are ‘decline in student engagement levels’ and ‘immediate attention needed in learning outcomes’, establishing a link between ‘what is taught’ to ‘understanding of concepts’ to ‘application of learning in exams’. The existing pedagogy systems aren’t interactive, and they aren’t designed or planned in a structured manner. It currently offers a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach, which isn’t driven by real-time data. The problem is further compounded by a scarcity of quality teachers/education in remote locations.
2020 will be an opportunity for the EdTech players to emerge as leaders and play a key role in revolutionising our education sector. It can be achieved by focussing on ‘student success’ as a tool to measure achievements and effectiveness, thereby stressing more on learning outcomes in the coming year. Aided by AI and MI, teachers in the EdTech industry will have the data to design a customised study plan and methodology for students. And then deliver live classes in an interactive manner by incorporating gamification. This will aid in driving student engagement and improving knowledge acquisition. Furthermore, carefully designed interventions i.e. parents'-teacher meeting and weekly reports will intensify focus on ‘student success’ in order to ensure greater efficacy of learning outcomes. Building and fostering a student community will enable students to interact with fellow peers, teachers and mentors, ask questions, share updates and much more.
However, moving into an era of digital learning, EdTech entrepreneurs shouldn’t reduce the role of the human element in teaching. In fact, it needs to be the centre of the product as it’s human interaction that engages and inspires students. Product development for education ought to be done in an ethical manner. Technology should enable students to focus, not cause them attention deficit problems.
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