Ed-Tech or Educational Technology is the integration of education with technology(which may include software, hardware, and different techniques to impart learning). It has long been adopted across the globe. The primary intent of ed-tech is to impart training to the users/students along with managing educational resources so as to improve the user’s academic performance and activity.
It is possible to improve the teaching process, learning process, and performance of the educational system by leveraging the technology.
India’s education system has seen a paradigm shift due to the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic. The subsequent lockdowns and the recent closure of schools and colleges resulted in the volume of funds going up to four times to over USD 2 billion as compared to USD 550 million the year before, as per a report by IVCA or Indian Venture Capital Association and PGA Labs.
Such potential is not observed in the sector’s history before the pandemic. Now, India’s ed-tech sector is poised to shine bright on a global scale. While significant adoption can be observed in the sectors like logistics, finance, and healthcare, the Ed-tech sector is also treading towards offering entirely new ways of learning.
According to a report by the Ministry of Human Resource Development, estimated that Edytech expenditure would reach around USD 10 trillion by 2030, as reported in June 2020.
According to co-founder and Chief Business Officer at Simplilearn, Mr. Kashyap Dalal,
“The first sign we saw was learning times skyrocketing. Learning times shot up 250% compared to the earlier norms, what we realized was that people working from home were getting more time to themselves, which they spent in upskilling.”
Some people who never believed that online learning would ever work, have suddenly changed their perspective. The pandemic and the lockdown brought the country to a sudden halt, which forced schools and colleges to go online for carrying on their academic sessions. After all, who would wish to waste their time and money?
In addition, the sheer size of the ed-tech market is projected to show a double-digit annual growth rate by 2025, which currently has 350 million learners and is valued at USD 100 million.
Customization is required
Today every online training provider gives you the convenience of learning at your own pace and that too at the hours chosen by you. Whether you enroll in PRINCE2 training or ITIL certification course, training providers offer flexible learning options. In addition, you get the flexibility to choose from various modes of learning. The different learning modes are:
- Blended learning (includes a blend of online training and instructor-led training)
- Online training (that goes entirely online)
- Instructor-led training (where you are given the experience as classroom training, an instructor is there to guide you all through the course).
These customizations made to the learning process have made training very interesting and the feeling ‘like never before’.
To customize the learning process, the ed-tech firms leverage technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) that serve the key to creating a personalized journey towards learning.
The issue arises in learning when there has to be a solution that is one-size-fits-all. According to Manan Khurma, Founder and CEO of Cuemath,
“While AI and ML are buzzwords, what you are trying to do is to tell every individual that they are unique, and hence, what they will like and how they will learn will be unique and that we will give them the content and experience they will like.”
When you go with offline education, you get friends and the learning environment is entirely different. The students meet, interact, have fun together, and learn from each other. Online platforms face this as a challenge to create an environment that is interactive in its own way. After all, it is the interaction that makes learning a great experience that goes offline.
It is crucial to look after the engagement of every student so that learning goes interesting. There are leaderboards to track student engagement because socialization is driving the engagement up significantly.
According to Kashyap, for an enriching experience, they try to create multicultural classrooms. He adds, “As a business, we get about 40 percent of our business from India and the rest is International. North America is a huge market for us. So, for example, if there is a cohort getting into a data program, then they will be people from India and from the U.S. A lot of learning happens from the kind of questions that different people ask, so you end up having a very interesting cohort that is diverse in terms of geography and industry, which becomes a very enriching experience.”
Once the infrastructure is made online, there can be a giant leap. Socialization also serves as a key to the payment landscape. The presentation was made by Navin Mistry, Director, SMB, PayPal, titled India’s EdTech opportunity- Go Global with PayPal. Some of the key highlights of this presentation are:
- There is a strong growth potential for the Edtech sector in India.
- A huge increase is observed in K-12 and reskilling segments.
- EdTech market of India is expected to reach USD 3.5 billion to USD 4 billion by 2022.
- The key differentiators in online education are pedagogy, language, pricing, syllabus, offline support, and teacher training.
- There is a huge increase in the adoption of tech-based solutions by schools, coaching centers, colleges, and other institutions.
Making edtech successful crucially requires a digital infrastructure that could be observed as the most powerful and effective public-private partnership (PPP) in the country. This has resulted in a surge in demand for project managers, software engineers, technical architects, sales and marketing professionals, institutional alliance professionals, and management professionals.
The pandemic has triggered the edtech sector to hire the talent that can let it design and build a revolutionary product and presence.