By following the technological advancements, the sphere of online education is getting smarter and has now started providing end-to-end solutions in content design, platform development, and content delivery. New pedagogical approaches are emerging to make learning interactive and engaging. By adopting cutting-edge technology, EdTech start-ups have stepped up research and development to introduce innovative ideas into e-learning. These ideas are pushing online education to new heights.
The online education user base has multiplied during the EdTech boom during the pandemic years. From pre-school education students to experienced professionals, everyone has entered the online learning space to further their education. While students want uninterrupted lessons, working professionals need to improve their skills in their fields to advance in their careers. Increased adoption amid the pandemic crises has led to a slew of investments from different funding agencies that have accelerated the growth of the EdTech sector across the globe. Online education and the EdTech market has taken a rapid leap over the past two years, due to the pandemic. According to Grand View Research, the global EdTech market was valued at USD 106.46 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 429 by 2030.
Upcoming trends for flexibility and interactivity
Along with adoption and investment, innovations in the form of advanced features and new approaches are shaping the future of the industry. Here are the upcoming trends in this light-
It has already started reinventing the e-learning ecosystem. Going forward, we will see breakthroughs in gamification in segments such as K-12, higher education, skills development, assessment and testing, and more. business course.
(The author is the Managing Director of UNext Learning)
Virtual reality and augmented reality (AR) will play a central role in online education in the years to come. The flourishing Extended Reality (XR), combining both VR and AR, will provide a near-real learning experience for students. Simulation-based experiential learning is considered the most effective learning and teaching method for successfully imbibing concepts.
Since they are from the era of TikTok videos and Instagram reels, the new generation of college students generally do not prefer long-form content. They are used to understanding ideas in short content – be it videos, texts or lectures. As a result, younger generations have a rather short attention span. At the same time, people of all ages largely depend on smart devices such as smartphones or tablets for various online activities including learning and development. Therefore, there is a need for online educators to produce small-sized content suitable for smart devices to engage learners and ensure on-the-go learning.
Results-oriented learning approach
The majority of learners on online platforms aim to develop their skills and strengthen their knowledge base to improve their job prospects and prepare for the future. A content- or platform-focused approach or a generalist course could not meet this objective. Therefore, outcome-based learning approaches and more learning programs in in-demand fields will emerge in the coming years.
Given the differences in cognitive abilities and level of understanding of each individual, adaptive learning is essential to reach a large population. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, neural network and deep learning are the driving forces behind this approach. There are two types of adaptive learning: content and platform. While course content changes based on individual ability in the first type, the entire platform adapts based on learners’ pace and understanding in the second. This will be a game changer for accessibility and inclusion in the education system.
The true possibilities of blockchain remain to be explored. Institutions of higher education (HEIs) are now adopting this technology for academic administration, record keeping and certification. In the future, we may see more blockchain applications in education. For example, with the smart contract, instructors can offer courses on decentralized ledgers, and learners can access them by paying course fees using cryptocurrency or other payment solutions. The course completion certificate will be issued online, allowing institutions to access it through the smart contract.
Rising adoption, investment, and innovation are transforming the online education space to become more productive. As time goes on and technology improves, we will witness many new trends in the online education space that could impact even the traditional education sector.