New Delhi:The advent of technology has triggered a wave of transformation in the Indian education sector. Technology is being adopted quickly and content is being rewritten and redesigned to adapt to the emerging media.
The advent of digitally enabled classrooms, cloud-based content, e-books and online assessments among others has enabled our education system to reach an inflection point.
Here are some trends in the EdTech segment that are being perceived as game changers for the educational landscape, as per V Sivaramakrishnan, Managing Director, Oxford University Press India:
Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR): A key trend in the sector is the emergence of Virtual and Augmented Reality. VR immerses the user in a virtual or imaginary environment. Immersive educational environments are already being used to provide learners a life-like experience in subjects as diverse as history and chemistry.
Augmented Reality, on the other hand, is a technology used to present an enhanced version of reality where elements of physical real-world environment are augmented with digital learning experiences. AR/VR technologies help learners experience and interact with digital learning objects to support their learning.
Adaptive learning through Artificial Intelligence: Adaptive learning has the potential to solve a crucial challenge in classroom learning – how to engage learners of different abilities in the same classroom. Adaptive learning systems use machine learning and to help personalise the presentation of learning material based on their learning speed, interest and problem areas.
In the hands of teachers, this can become an important tool to ensure more uniform learning. Machine learning, along with natural processing and speech recognition technologies, are also facilitating the development of conversational programs, also called chatbots. The bots can be programmed to provide a wide variety of services such as tutoring.
Learning Analytics: Little data is personal activity data which when analysed by intelligent systems, is able to provide key insights into the way students learn. It may become an important source of information and insight for decision-making for educators. It may also unlock new potential for personalisation of tools and content.
By adding the right information capture mechanisms and real-time insight capabilities, traditional Learning Management Systems (LMS) can now vastly enhance the teaching-learning experience. The implications of a data-driven approach will be far reaching and will permeate not just teaching and learning but other areas including guidance on career choices.
Online Assessments: New forms of technology mediated assessments have enabled a big shift from fixed-in-point summative assessments, which are today at the core of the learning process, to more continuous and adaptive formative assessments. Online assessment solutions are clearly more customisable, interactive, secure and quick to deliver. They work across multiple platforms (mobile included) and offer detailed interactive dashboards to analyse performance from various aspects.
The ability to store historical assessment data and compare progress over time can be used to establish a trend and also draw inferences on the learners’ progress in the context of learning. Online testing also brings in the benefits of anytime testing, remote proctoring, real-time audio-video integration and also more personalised testing.
With the above trends in place, Sivaramakrishnan said, “2018 will be an interesting year for Education, clearly with EdTech disrupting traditional methods, pedagogies and mindsets. Its seamless integration with print and classroom practices will be central to its success in the Indian context, and wider acceptance by stakeholders the key to its longevity.”
However, he opined that it is important not to lose sight of the evolving needs of the educator in the context of the fast-paced EdTech developments.
“Teacher training programmes, offered online, offline or in a combination, are key to up skilling our educators who are often the primary consumers of these EdTech solutions and play a pivotal role in seeding and growing adoption among learners,” said Sivaramakrishnan.