In today’s ‘always-on’ world (and yes, during the outbreak of epidemics like the one we all are currently exposed to) e-learning offers multiple benefits to both learners and organizations. One could not ignore the efforts of EdTech companies for revamping our learning environments.
Edtech is just like any other industry-specific offshoot of technology that has been changing the complex and diversified learning world; first embraced by the education sector then, gradually found its way into the corporate world - as learning and self-development don't stop on graduation day.
We, office workers, spend around 1,700 hours in front of computer screens per year and most businesses are totally dependent on tech devices, it only makes sense for businesses to integrate technology into their operations, including training.
Before tapping into the world of Edtech, let’s briefly understand the importance of e-learning, it’s why online learning outweighs the traditional face-to-face/classroom learning.
Advancement and efficiency are the two most important drivers of today’s businesses; many organizations are turning to e-learning to save resources, especially time, energy, and money.
Here’s a breakdown of some of the benefits that organizations are gaining from an online learning platform.
- no need to travel, no learning materials, no venue and catering arrangements, no printing cost; resultantly, these cost-saving thresholds can boost ROI up to 42%.
- Flexible and convenient
- Your employees need just the internet to learn an online course, no more gathering all employees in one place or sending them abroad or somewhere to learn or train (especially JIT training); the same is the case with students.
- E-learning boosts productivity and performance
- Now, with Edtech software, platforms and a variety of TMs (training management systems), businesses don’t need to spend ample amount of time to learn a new process/machine before beginning to work on it. Edtech lets employees learn anytime, anywhere; every dollar spent in e-training results in $30 in productivity.
Edtech Trends 2020
An influx of education technology is opening dynamic learning avenues for employees and students of all professions and careers while extending collaboration and personalized learning experiences. And that is why modern organizations are measured by how adaptable their employees are and how fast they can learn new skills and absorb information.
So, here are some of the significant ways Edtech is making e-learning super-easier and convenient to practice.
We all have heard an old saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words”, what if I multiply this thousand with 30 frames per second and there are 60 seconds in a minute, so how many words would be?
Don’t worry? No need to calculate - according to research by Forrester, a minute video learning is worth 1.8 million words, and on average, a 400-page textbook contains 120,000 words - so, what you say, what’s better?
Video-based learning is increasingly getting popular, especially among younger generations; in fact, Youtube is the most-preferred educational medium for Generation Z. Nowadays, employers are not only using Youtube but also exploring other video streamers and software to acquire and gather knowledge with fewer limitations.
Video-assisted learning is more useful for background information, company tours, cultural introductions, and organizational overviews, especially for new team members than face-to-face meetings.
Other areas where video assistance works best are;
- Basic skills training
- Showing how product/service works
- Organizational structure
- Break down of Silos
- Sharing knowledge about previous meetings
Even school managers are allowing teachers to use video-based tools like Teachertube and BrainPop to create instructional videos on multiple subjects, either to provide or supplement new material, mainly for subjects like history.
And yes, if any of your student/employee’s motivation is lagging for any boring task, give him/her a video reference, s/he will learn faster and better.
Machine learning is a branch of AI that builds algorithms and selects models designed to provide results based on the given data. The machine learning algorithms recognize patterns in the data to generate and deliver a more refined output. The more data you give to the algorithm, the better it gets at pairing patterns, also, use the previously collected results for accurate results.
Machine learning is the base of any customizable, flexible, and learner-centered learning management system (LMS). You may ask how?
- Machine Learning algorithms track the users’ performance and registered in an LMS and use them to shape future sessions, so if your employee is weak in any stage of the production process, then the program will respond accordingly.
- With the help of machine learning, employers/educators can significantly cut down course time, which lets employees give more time and attention to their job-related tasks. And, having access to learners’ progress, employers can schedule training programs accordingly, so that the individual skill/s of employees can be polished. This will saves time and resources on those training materials that will neither benefit the current goals nor improve employees’ skills.
- Since ML helps learners to acquire personalized learning solutions, which means non of the employee/student will be demotivated as they don’t need to go through the dull and unimportant parts of the course/program. Once learners know the course responds precisely to their individual needs, they will be more interested in participating in it.
- With eLearning courses, say goodbye to additional payroll hours those devoted to training. Your Learning and Development department won’t be needing to spend hours in drafting learners’ results but instead, need to invest more attention in gathering valuable and up-to-date content eLearning materials.
Accessibility in e-learning is about using technology and standards to create training content in a way that is easily accessible to all learners, regardless of their disabilities.
Do you know, in the UK, 19% of the working population is disabled, according to an estimate, around 3.8 million people are disabled in the UK workforce today? The numbers would be more in reality, like many disabilities such as dyslexia or color blindness are often ignorable and often undeclared out of fear of discrimination.
Companies with all-inclusive learning programs are likely to outperform - from reputation to employee wellbeing, and to their sales and bottom line.
Thanks to technology, enabling us to move towards, helping employers to opt for more interactive and engaging e-learning courses. Make sure accessibility in e-learning doesn’t mean providing a Word or PDF version of any course, rather it is creating innovative e-learning material with accessibility at the heart of it - it’s like creating a universal (in design, accessibility, and management buy-in) format to cater requirements for all.
Developing a version for each individual person requires a great deal of testing, research, and cooperation, but the end result would incredibly rewarding.
Let’ see how EdTech is helping to bridge the gap when dealing with differently-abled learners;
- Electronic worksheets - for those with learning disabilities.
- Audio recordings and text-to-speech assistance - for visually impaired or dyslexic employees.
- 1:1 devices - for those with mobility impairments.
- Video recording - to restructure lessons and make it more understandable for behavioral or attention issues.
The list continues...
The digital curriculum incorporates online learning materials, including pre-made software for purposes like classroom/work management, automatic tracking, and else, empowering employers, so they can save time and help learners in individualized learning.
You will find an abundance of learning management systems (LMS) loaded with ready-made presentations, interactive lessons, pre-made lesson plans, automatic assessments, printable worksheets, and a whole lot more. That’s why the popularity of digital curriculums is exceptionally growing across industries and technical institutions.
Having an online curriculum helps employees to opt to expand their core competencies and pursue skills that could enhance their performance on the job or open up new opportunities for them at their company. In large organizations, courses are pre-built and aligned with the latest certification standards, which makes it easier for learners to choose what, and most importantly, when to access a course from a given comprehensive curriculum.
Customized digital curriculum solutions are also becoming possible due to the varying needs of employers, teachers, and learning institutions.
As technology is evolving, so does our on-demand for online training solutions; we all want information at our fingertips, find answers within minutes, this immediacy has dramatically changed our expectations towards learning. Now, training participants want to take control of their own learning, in contrast to traditional structures.
And, this is what self-paced or individualized learning offers - it’s an opportunity for learners to learn based on their individual educational needs, learning styles, and personal schedules.
Accessibility to online training offers the flexibility to discover where you made mistakes before moving to the next unit/step, especially if you are a learner who searches for Google and YouTube to learn a new skill. The model of individual learning is ideal for those who prefer independent study.
With an on-demand personalized training method, neither outside lecturer or trainer needs to come nor any employer needs to go somewhere else. Your entire learner’s circle will have access to videos from renowned experts at a fraction of the cost of traditional learning solutions.
Now, there are an abundance of subscription-based online training courses that can eliminate time and costs related to travel and material, while providing the best learning experiences for all the training participants.
The shift to cloud computing for most of the systems used by employers - for learners’ information, accounting, facilities, grading - has brought countless benefits, but what about the security risks that this data-driven phenomena hosts? They are also mitigating.
As per the European regulation on the protection of personal data (GDPR);
- It is mandatory throughout Europe to know how and when data was collected, stored, recorded, transferred, and deleted.
- It’s obligatory to inform users of the intended use for the data - the data collectors must receive the express consent of users for the use of their personally-identifiable data.
Talking about GDPR and LMS, companies that use employees’ private data must now determine the specifics and the very purpose of the data being collected. Add to that; they are undertaken to hold up-to-date data, stored for the desired and informed period, and protected against any unauthorized accessing and processing.
As per the right to be forgotten, individuals may ask the data controller to modify or delete their information as soon as possible.
Every individual involved with the data for an LMS must know their responsibilities and the risks associated with being non-compliance with data protection rules.
The GDPR also commands organizations to document all stages of data processing - right from creation, to enrichment, modification, and deletion.
For strengthening the data protection, GDPR also entailed encryption of the data - so that security breaches can be reduced.
So, what we have learned so far, Edtech is helping businesses to earn their highest ROI, especially the investment being made in manpower, and that is the reason why modern employers are looking for ways to find flexible EdTech solutions.
The progressive world of EdTech offers accessibility, not to only privileged ones, but to an entire lot of learners regardless of their physical, mental, and/or emotional bifurcation.
Interestingly, EdTech made personalized learning possible yet easier; now employees don’t need to go through unnecessary parts of any training program, only the needed education will be given.
And that is only possible with the help of machine learning, that recognizes human behavior and provides results accordingly, it means no trend analysis and possibilities, only definite yet calculated results will be drawn. Now employers don’t need to be burdened with so many training solutions and costs, rather EdTech solutions will decide the digital curriculum based on the individual learner’s intellect and capabilities.
Anyway, 2020 is an exciting year for EdTech, thanks to employers and educators for leveraging a connected world and delivering media-rich, student-centric solutions to help learners across the globe
As a supporter of EdTech, we are committed to spreading the change in the EdTech revolution, so that organizations become profitable and productive for years to come. If you need help with the development, contact our team of EdTech experts.