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5 Emerging Trends That Will Shape the Future of Ed-Tech

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Education technology adoption across the country has increased significantly over the last couple of years. This trend is seen not only in India but also in other parts of the world. A recent study “The 2018 Global Learning Technology Investment Patterns: The Rise of the Edtech Unicorns”, published by research firm Metaari revealed that the ed-tech sector globally received USD 16.3 billion funding with Chinese edtech companies, snapping up a 44.1per cent and US ed-tech companies taking 32per cent of the total global funding.

5 Emerging Trends That Will Shape the Future of Ed-Tech

The ed-tech space will continue to remain a prominent sector and we see the below trends emerging in the year 2019

  1. Blended Learning – This year will see more companies offering blended learning solutions, that combine technology with teachers. There is a strong need to build solutions with the underlying principle that technology will not replace but augment the teacher. One of the key factors to succeed in achieving goals is hard work and often, it is not easy without a mentor or a coach giving that nudge and support when required. This is all the more true for K12 students, as in most cases, students are not self-motivated and require the support of a teacher. "Evaluation of Evidence-Based Practices in Online Learning: A Meta-Analysis and Review of Online Learning Studies," an extensive study conducted by SRI International for the U.S. Department of Education, found that students in blended learning classes outperformed those in fully online or fully in-person classes.

  2. Personalization with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) – Personalization was a luxury a few years ago but now with technology, it is becoming a way of life for everyone. Instead of the same programs being telecast for one and all, today we can personalize our television viewing experience based on our likes and dislikes. Similarly, in education personalization is being rapidly integrated into learning solutions. We will see this trend gaining momentum in 2019 as students learn best if learning happens at their pace and is adapted for their style of learning. For example, kinaesthetic learners get activities, visual learners get more pictures and videos etc, making learning more meaningful and less stressful.

  3. Active Learning – “Chalk and Talk” style of teaching will soon be a thing of the past not just in the classroom but in online solutions which currently offer more video-based content only. Students learn best when they take control of their learning and are cognitively engaged in the process of learning. And as adults, we can vouch for this as we have seen time and again that we are good at those things on which we have taken initiative to learn and master. According to a study published by Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences, USA, students in classes with traditional lecturing were 1.5 times more likely to fail than were students in classes with active learning. There are niche players in the ed-tech space who have designed their products with ‘Active Learning’ as their design principle and have seen good traction. This trend will continue to be a dominating trend in the months to come.

  4. Gamification – Gamification is not a new trend in education but the need to increase student engagement and attention span is more than ever, so we will see gamification making big in ed-tech solutions. Research has shown that kids learn better when they are more engaged and focused through game-based learning which evokes creativity, imagination, and self-discovery. So, we will see more game-based learning solutions coming up.

  5. Going Above and Beyond the Curriculum – In the last 2 years, another trend that has gained traction among parents is participation in competitions and Olympiads being conducted nationally and internationally. After the Indian government’s decision to participate in Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2021, which tests the learning level of 15 year olds, after a nearly 10 year hiatus post a debacle in its first PISA entry in 2009 where India stood at 72nd position among 74 participating countries, we will see the push from educational boards and schools as well. So, we will see more ed-tech companies focusing on these niches by bringing out solutions which develop strong analytical, critical thinking and problem-solving skills, along with real-life applications of textbook concepts.

As with everything else in life, change is always welcome. The education system in India was badly stuck in a bygone era and these winds of change brought in by technologies are being welcomed by all stakeholders, be it, parents, students, schools or government. So, by all means, education technology will continue to be the flavour of the year.

posted Feb 28 in EdTech by Monich

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+1 vote

Advances in existing tools like artificial intelligence and edge computing are expected to be key focuses for 2019, according to IT analyst group Gartner’s top 10 tech trends for 2019

“The top 10 digital technology trends are all about building the intelligent digital mesh,” says David W. Cearley, vice president and analyst for Gartner. “It’s the convergence of all of this and using it to support a continuous innovation process.”

Universities have already seen some of these tools enter the education space, with innovations such as artificial intelligence-enabled teaching assistant programs and advanced data collection and analysis to improve student performance.

As higher education institutions compete for prospective students and look to improve offerings for those on campus, technology trends on the horizon could give universities the edge they need. 

Artificial Intelligence Will Augment Data-Driven Initiatives

Analysts expect machine learning to play an important role in 2019, offering support for tasks that may require more time, energy and training than teachers and administrators have at their disposal.

  • Autonomous machines: Gartner predicts AI-enabled machines will be more common in 2019 as the technology advances and becomes commercially available. Some institutions, like Boston University, are already proposing high-tech facilities for students to experiment with autonomous machines. Other colleges are entertaining the idea of marrying AI with video content to offer more personalized learning.
  • Augmented analytics: Professors and administrators rely on data analysis to get a sense of the effectiveness of a curriculum, especially as personalized learning programs become more widely adopted. Data collection and analysis has led to innovations in student assessment design, helping educators pinpoint where students are struggling and adjusting coursework to supplement those areas. Augmented analytics will help take some of the burden off users who may not be trained in data analytics, or smaller IT teams who could be more helpful putting their time somewhere else by using AI to do most of the lifting instead.

New Tools Blend the Digital and Physical Worlds

Digital transformation on college campuses is already happening at a rapid rate, and there seems to be no sign of slowing down. Analysts predict the line between the real and digital worlds will continue to blur as current technologies advance and new tools are developed.

  • Digital twins: This concept is not new. Members of the online community maintain multiple versions of themselves through social media sites, online profiles and other means. Systems such as power plants have digital copies, mirroring the real thing, to monitor daily functions. This technology could be used in conjunction with AI to adapt the focus of a student’s learning to target the areas that student’s digital twin — and therefore the student — does not know yet. On a less abstract level, digital twins are also a convenient way for students to work with more accurate models of objects that would be difficult to attain or dangerous to interact with.
  • Empowered edge: Edge computing takes information processing and brings it closer to the source by using edge devices instead of sending information directly to and from a centralized cloud. The next iteration, empowered edge, will use AI to diversify the kinds of devices able to act as edge endpoints, such as displays or smartphones. This could prove crucial for universities that require more computing power as they strive for a fully connected campus or integrate new tools like augmented and virtual reality headsets.
  • Immersive technologies: Speaking of AR and VR, the use of immersive technology is expected to rise as hardware and software continue to improve. According to Gartner, by 2022, 70 percent of organizations will experiment with immersive technology. With 5G on the horizon promising lower latency and more robust connectivity, the quality of these tools will continue to grow, expanding their potential to supplement higher education.

Improvements in Mesh Means a Focus on How Users Engage with Tech

Universities are swiftly replacing older equipment with their next-generation versions. Previously, cork message boards were a natural part of most campuses; today, digital signage is standard. As this transition continues, universities will need to be mindful of how they design their learning environments.

  • Smart Spaces: Educators are investigating connected classrooms and modern learning environments as the latest innovation in teaching, and Gartner analysts agree that smart spaces will be a major focus for 2019. Combined with other emerging tech such AI and the empowered edge, the future of the connected classroom is guaranteed.
  • Digital Ethics and Privacy: The technology on Gartner’s list has the potential broaden how we incorporate technology into our lives, which means proper digital citizenship will be essential. For example, digital twins have great potential for improving learning, but such tools also require giving up valuable data and privacy to the digital universe. This means universities will need to improve curricula and resources addressing responsible technology use and online presence. 

While educators have to wait to see what’s in store for 2019, the technology on Gartner’s list has the potential to change the way universities approach education and campus life. 

GARTNER’S LIST OF TOP TECH TRENDS FOR 2019:

  1. Autonomous things
  2. Augmented analytics
  3. AI-driven development
  4. Digital twins
  5. Empowered edge
  6. Immersive technologies
  7. Blockchain
  8. Smart spaces
  9. Digital ethics and privacy
  10. Quantum computing
+1 vote

The world is changing, and education must change with it. Many schools are aware of this fact and are trying to rebuild their activities in accordance with the opportunities offered by new technologies. Some universities borrow ideas from the business world, referring to the experience of successful start-ups in order to launch some new processes for themselves. Gradually, a paper routine leaves the schools, giving way to electronic means of working with data.

1. School as a Service

School as a service begins with the commitment of the state to each student as a digital student. When states reduce historical barriers, the transition to personal digital learning will mean a school service: access to quality courses and teachers from several providers.

Education SaaS changes the basic assumptions – it does not need to associate time and place. This does not mean that everything will become virtual – in the foreseeable future, at least 90 percent of families will benefit from local schools, but this requires new thinking, new staffing models, new budgeting strategies and new ways of communicating with students and families.

2. Mobile Learning

Mobile learning, also known as m-learning, is an educational system. Using portable computing devices (such as iPads, laptops, tablets, PDAs, and smartphones), wireless networks provide mobility and mobile training, which allows to teach and learn to expand beyond the traditional audience. Within the class, mobile training provides instructors and students with increased flexibility and new possibilities for interaction.

3. Gamification in Education

Gamification in education is sometimes described using other terms: game thinking, the principles of the game for learning, the design of motivation, the design of interaction, etc. This differs from game-based learning in that it doesn`t imply that students themselves play commercial video games. It works on the assumption that the kind of interaction that players encounter with games can be transformed into an educational context in order to facilitate learning and influence on students’ behaviour. Because gamers voluntarily spend a lot of time for gaming, researchers and teachers are exploring ways to use the power of video games to motivate and apply it in the classroom.

4. Big Data

“Big Data” is a term that we are used to hearing in business, but it is also an important tool for education. Learning World explores this technological fashion word and talks with an expert on this topic: Kenneth Cuciere, co-author of “Learning with Big Data.”

Cukier sees “Big Data” as an opportunity to adapt learning to the individual needs of students and the learning process. Instead of avoiding this, teachers must accept changes that bring in large data, and use them to their advantage.

One example of the large data that occurs in education is the “Course Signals”, which allow professors to give feedback if there are early signs that students do not exercise or do not use class time.

5. Blended and Flipped Learning

Blended learning is a pedagogical method in which the learner learns, at least in part, by providing content and training through digital and online media using the student controls in time or place. This allows the student to create an individual and integrated approach to learning. Blended training is combined with a flipped class approach to learning.

The Flipped class is a pedagogical model in which the typical elements of the lecture and the homework of the course change to the opposite. Students watch short video lectures or other multimedia materials asynchronously before a class session. Then, class time is devoted to active learning, such as discussions, design or problem assignments, or laboratory exercises. This learning model allows teachers to guide the teaching of students by answering students’ questions and helping them apply the concepts of the course during classes.

6. Massive Online Open Courses

Nowadays MOOCs may not be so widespread as when they first attracted attention, and people no longer think that this is the answer to the problems of educational inequality. Nevertheless, MOOCs still deserve close attention, as it develops as an important part of education, and it offers its students many advantages if used well. Moreover, The New York Times called 2013 the “Year of the MOOC” because it attracted a lot of attention and money.

7. Personalized Learning

Personalized learning is a sort of adaptive learning that considers working with computers to make decisions, based on previous levels of learner understanding when interacting with a computer program. Learning analytics and artificial intelligence are the essences of individual learning because without them it would be impossible to easily adapt the instruction on the basis of immediate answers.

Personalized learning can seem like a dream in many schools, but it’s already happening more than we can imagine – and often behind the back of the teacher.

in EdTech
+1 vote

Today, India is one of the world's top destinations for education. With some of the best colleges and universities, it is renowned for its excellence and high standards. What's even more interesting is how technology has advanced rapidly to transform the way students in India consume educational content. Additionally, the penetration of internet-based smartphones is taking quality learning to students across geographies in India.

Today, little children are watching their favourite cartoons and learning pictorial rhymes on the same device. Education is being imparted to them through flexible and non-intrusive formats. As a consequence, students across all age groups are discovering the joys of learning and having fun while at it. There has been a noticeable shift in the perception of parents and teachers view digital learning too. Today, institutions are making efforts to shift the focus back on students to reinvent the way they learn right throughout their life.

India might not have readily adopted education technology but it's heartening to see how a traditional sector like education is using technology as an enabler so far. Today, some cutting-edge technologies are being used to further enhance this sector, while grabbing the attention of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, corporates and governments.

Here are the factors that are enabling the growth of digital education:

1. Personalised and adaptive learning

Learning platforms, software and digital devices are together creating countless new ways to modify education. This way, the academic potential, strengths, weaknesses, aptitude and learning pace of every single student is catered to. Precise, mobile and reliable applications are being created to teach students, help them practice their learnings, take assignments and manage their schedules.

Schools are now providing their students with digital devices like desktop computers, laptops and tablets. These devices are aiding them in the teaching process while also helping them understand how students learn and how to enhance their learning process.

The 'one size fits all' teaching model is being supplemented by adaptive, personalized learning pedagogies. Going forward, this will be the new trend informal learning that will enable students to be technologically skilled and equipped for modern workplaces.

2. Two-way conversations in E-Learning

In the traditional classroom seating scenario, students are unable to get the individual attention they need due to time constraints. In contrast, the one-to-one context of learning in digital mediums currently students to learn through videos and chat with an expert.

The upcoming 'Learning Management System' will continue the two-way communication model between students and experts. More importantly, it will let students track their coursework progress, identify improvement areas and offer ways to make the most of them.

Through the help of 'Big Data', experts will be able to capture student feedback within the framework of the content provided. With this alone, they'll be able to improvise and enhance their offerings in new ways to further benefit students.

3. Mobile-based learning

Over the past few years, mobile learning has picked up by the populace who have gradually assimilated it in their lives. It has offered students the flexibility to access educational content seamlessly across multiple digital devices like desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones.

The smartphone user base in India continues to increase, in both urban and rural areas. The coming years will witness users accessing most of their educational content through internet powered smartphones in a massive way. Most educational content, including even online courses, will be optimized entirely for mobile devices.

4. Video-based learning

Video learning has always appealed to students since it closely mirrors the traditional classroom teaching style. Earlier, students watched video lectures as a form of homework and then discussed them during the next class. Over time, this habit brought about a remarkable improvement in their performance, with a noticeable improvement in grades.

Video lectures allowed students to learn subject syllabi at their own pace and dedicate time spent in class towards interactions. This will continue to be a trend in the future where students will have access to rich and interactive content, that will be useful for both formal training as well as performance enhancement. The increase in video-based learning on mobile devices will eventually account for 80 per cent of all internet traffic by 2019.

5. Open educational resources

Open digital education resources have commonly been used in distance learning courses. They consist of freely accessible media for learning, teaching and research purposes. They are licensed to be revised and disseminated freely by teachers among students. This allows the latter to gain access to an extensive arrive of study material that is otherwise restricted indigenously.

Open educational resources also facilitate the creation of a flexible environment where teachers can customize educational content for individual sessions or classroom seatings. This is applicable for typical curricular subjects like mathematics, sciences and languages, as well as business and fine arts.

6. Usage of Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) for learning

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are already buzzwords in the technology space. Their advent in e-learning has massively impacted the efficiency with which it is offered to students and the way it assesses their performance.

VR allows students using e-learning platforms on mobile devices to directly interact with study material. This keeps their engagement levels high and motivates them to learn more and better. On the other hand, AR facilitates teachers and trainers in performing tasks, they previously haven't or cannot, in a safe environment.

Together, both of them are engaging students in ways like never before and are poised to become a lot more widespread in their usage and impact in the future.

in EdTech
+2 votes

The future classroom needs to be radically different in order to become relevant for the new era of education. Technology will be at the centre of this metamorphosis. When our parents recall their school days, they make no big deal about a makeshift class under a tree. They were used to taking down notes from blackboard on which teachers would write using dusty chalk. With time, chalk and duster were replaced with touchscreens, audio-visual facilities, and the era of digital learning started.

However, the journey will be much more exciting in the next decade. Here are the 5 things that will not be same in the future classrooms:

 

1. Question papers and answer sheets

We have already seen some tests being conducted online. However, as technology becomes more accessible and affordable, it will largely replace pen and paper-based tests.

The rationale is simple. Online tests need lesser logistical arrangements, can be customized for different batches, and evaluated quickly and accurately using artificial intelligence and algorithms.

Imagine the time saved by future high school and 12th aspirants when they receive their board exam results within a week, thanks to online examination. They can plan the future course of their career and do not have to spend months in speculation.

 

2. Practice books

Practice makes a man perfect. All of us have heard (and practiced) it. But technology will change the way students practice.

For instance - Avocado, an app enables students to practice questions from Maths and Science. Using Avocado, student can get customized practice tests, detailed explanation for answers, and review their results with just a few taps.

What makes a digital platform for practice like Avocado unique is the insights based on test results over a period of time. This helps the students understand areas which require intervention from their teacher or parents.

Using Avocado and similar practice solutions, parents and teachers can also track the progress of their wards and make informed decisions to improve speed and accuracy. All these details are available on a smartphone- anytime, anywhere.

 

3. Computer labs

Once upon a time, computers were a rare commodity for Indian students. The weekly computer lab class was their chance to touch, feel, and see this magic box.

However, this is no more the case. With digital revolution, most middle-class families can afford a personal computer.

Moreover, about 337 million smartphones make India world’s second largest smartphone equipped population. Over the next five years, smartphones and tablets will completely transform the look and feel of computer labs in schools.

These labs will follow Bring-Your-Own-Device and Do-It-Yourself approach. Meanwhile, teachers can take the role of mentors.

There will be many innovations that trigger self-learning in computer labs. For example, Cubetto is a friendly wooden robot that can teach early age learners the basics of computer programming through adventure and hands-on play.

The Cubetto Playset consists of a friendly robot made of hard-wearing wood, a physical programming board, and a set of colourful coding blocks that make up a programming language you can touch.

 

4. Textbooks

Typically, textbooks are written assuming one-size-fits-all’. The need of the hour is to customize the learning journey for every student based on speed, understanding, and interests. E-books can fill this much-needed gap.

Powered by virtual learning, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, e-books are well suited for supplementing conventional textbooks. Students also appreciate the interactive nature of E-books.

Having said that, textbooks are and will remain an important part of the education system. We will see an amalgamation of both textbooks and e-books going ahead.

 

5. Benches and desks

 

The neat rows of benches are meant to seat students in a way that they focus on the teacher delivering a lecture and demonstrating concepts on the board. But this approach will soon go out of favour.

Future classrooms will have flexible seating arrangement suited for the task that students are working on. The design will also consider comfort of the students.

Standing desks for those who find it hard to focus while sitting, accommodation for physically challenged, collaborative stations for group activities, and moving walls to make the space more adaptable are some classroom design innovations that will become the new normal.

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