India holds an important place in the global education industry and has one of the largest higher education systems in the world. However, there is still a lot of potential for further development in the education system which can be leveraged through technology.
The emergence of data-driven education technologies is triggering fundamental changes in how school and college students as well as professionals seeking new skills approach learning. The millions of students flocking to education-technology start-ups is a clear indicator of the transformation the education industry is undergoing.Classrooms, be it in a school or college, are slowly inching towards infusion of modernity and are rooting out the most conventional method.
The transition from traditional learning to tech-based education is clearly evident.Digital learning is mandatory in this age; it is definitely the need of the hour in India.Majority of people in India comprise of what is called the Millennials, who are incredibly tech savvy-laptops, tablets and e-learningare apart of their everyday life. Hence, it is imperative to provide them the right kind of education. The introduction of IT will not only aid the students but also the faculty, and as a result overall efficiency of the system is bound to improve.
Students and employability gap
Super power aspiring India has a future generation of employment-unfit workers lacking in basic communication, arithmetic and cognitive skills.Studies reveal that employers do not only look for academic success, but key employability skills such as self-management, problem-solving, verbal communication skills, and team and people management. In India, youth represent 25% of the total working age population but make up 40 % of the unemployed demographics (ILO, FAO, 2015). This clearly emphasizes the fact that imbibing life skills are equally important as academic skills received in schools and colleges. Highlighting the current scenario of the education system in India, and foreseeing its future, technology will be playing a crucial empowering students through new-age learning modes that augment learning capacities of students.
Tablets replacing teachers
India has become the second largest market for e-learning after the US. The sector is currently pegged at US$ 2-3 billion, and is expected to touch US$ 40 billion by 2017.There is almost no debate now that digital education is the future norm. However, tablets cannot replace teachers, but can be used to complement and enhance learning. For this, we need digital technologies that are tailored around teachers and students to enhance pedagogies by providing relevant learning in-sync to our digital times. So the key lies in using digital platforms and solutions to deliver secure and quality content, using new innovative approaches and, more importantly, provide access to quality teachers and trainers. Moreover, an all-inclusive platform that can connect all the dots – deliver good quality content in a secure environment, channelize communication, engage students and trainers/teachers through interactive modes, and provide self-assessment and accountability will define the future ofeducation. This will mark the start of the era of “classroom without walls.”
Role of Edtech
Technology is addressing the huge disconnect among students, looking to enter the industry.Although students have the right academic qualifications, they lack basic life skillslike presentation skills, public speaking, etc. that go a long way in their careergrowth. Edtech platforms are pioneering a new form of value-based digital education that traversesbeyond e-learning and making course content available online. New learning approaches likes gamification and interactive modessuch as video lectures, cartoons, games, quizzes, animations, peer – to – peer learning and simulated role-plays, have come into the picture. Theseprovide adequate exposure and deep understanding of concepts with implementation details and their applications.This leverages the learning experience as they support aconstant cycle of feedback and self-assessment, helping learners augment capabilities.
Today, such smart systems are powered by artificial intelligent and are able to track the learner’s weak areas and plan the journey accordingly. With the use of augmented reality and artificial intelligent, digital learning modes enable individuals to ‘make learning come alive’ and help them to evaluate and asses themselves, and consequently improve skill capabilities.
Working with open source technologies like Linux, python, OpenCV, Php, Mysql, AngularJS, etc., edtech platforms use various leading technologies/languages from the front-end(AngularJS) to the backend(php/python/Mysql). These apps are developed in accordance to latest Api’s/packages provided by google to support features like VR and also use Amazon cloud services for hosting with Nginx as the web server, which is currently the one of the fastest webs servers available in the market. Globally, it is estimated that about a billion people are benefitting from education technologies. In the US, edtech is a burgeoning industry growing at a breakneck speed and India has joined the bandwagon with a number of entrepreneurs working on improving education.
The writer is co-founder of iAugmentor Labs Pvt Ltd.