Thoughts and commentary on a future of education which is already underway.

GUEST COLUMN | by Anjli Jain

We are living in an era when technology has evolved our lives beyond our imagination. So used to tech-enabled solutions, even the thought of living without them comes across as a nightmare to us. Following the herd for good, the education sector is also not spared from the shower of such tech advancements.

Today, students are happy learning lessons on their tablets and are enjoying the bliss of VR to go back in time and live in different eras—instead of merely reading their history notes. We are already witnessing the future of education now, and as it moves forward, it will indeed continue to be a treat.

Amidst all such advancements and cutting-edge tech inclusions, the education sector is destined to evolve.

To better understand where it’s headed, let’s have a look at some of the ways technology inclusions will be spelled out in the education sector in the years to come.

It’s Going To Be ‘All Personalized’

Every student is different. So are their learning curves. Hence, ensuring that students are spending most of their time in learning what they need—instead of following a one-lesson-for-all model is imperative, and we are surely going to witness the thorough inclusion of the same in the future. Inclusion of technologies like DreamBox to make sure that every student is learning, per their pace and requirements, is something we are going to see more often.

It is good to see that adaptive learning has already replaced the traditional learning system, enabling students to move above from using pen and paper to using personalized lessons on their computer screens.

Yes! Teachers Will Always Be Important

I am sure you’ll second that!

With all these technology additions becoming the norm, we shouldn’t contemplate that the teachers are going to be replaced. Instead, these technology additions will act as a vehicle to complement them.

Human teachers are always going to be an essential part of the education system. With the availability of more data, teachers would be able to leverage technology additions to ensure that every student is making the most of it.

Teachers would now be able to analyze student progress and provide personalized tests and assessments.

This way, educators would also be able to recommend better ways of adding technology in the classrooms.

Along with this, educators play an important role in fostering a passion for learning and respect for other classmates among the students. And, I am sure you’d agree that technology alone might not be able to do it right! At the end of the day, you cannot expect human emotions from robots!

Edutainment Will Show Its Importance

Entertainment + Education = Edutainment. This amazing amalgamation is sure to increase student engagement, eventually uplifting student retention rates.

Introduction of slides, videos, and even AI-enabled learning spheres have already replaced chalkboard-style learning methodologies at institutions.

From educative podcasts to educational events happening across the globe, tech-enabled education is certain to upsurge the involvement of edutainment.

After all, what student wouldn’t like to learn in a creative and fun way.

A survey of more than 3,300 U.S. college students indicates that a majority of students now embrace digital learning technology for its ability to improve their grades, save time and boost grades.

Increased Inclusion of Games & Simulations

Ever heard of RoomQuake, where a room is converted to a scaled-down earthquake simulation?

Speakers are used to play the sounds of an earthquake; students take reading on seismograph simulations and work on other factors like epicenters and fault lines.

In such learning environment, students are exposed to a practical understanding of the concepts which they otherwise only read about in their course books.

In such kinds of activities, students actively participate in learning a concept thoroughly, and stay more engaged. Students work collaboratively in groups and learn project management skills and techniques. I still believe in the old maxim, teamwork is always good work!

Students Will Be More Responsible

With the help of personalized learning and adaptive learning tools, students can track their own growth.

This leads to creating responsibility among students to do better for their own benefit and growth. Students take more ownership and get more involved in tailor-made learning programs, creating independency and a sense of responsibility.

The Bottom Line Is

Around 75% of teachers find their work unmanageable today, and the retention rates for private for-profit institutions overall are around 56%.

Looking at all these numbers, technology additions seem imperative. These inclusions will enable teachers and educators to help students in a better way.

Personalized learning programs, digitized learning, inclusion of technologies like AI, AR/VR, ML, Blockchain, etc. will make the education space a better place. And not only this, but when paired up with human/teacher assistance, these technologies will become even greater assets to the education sector.

In the end, the only underlying question is, will educators take these technology inclusions as a blessing—or a curse?

Anjli Jain is a Managing Partner at EVC Ventures, a $50 million Chicago-based venture capital fund and the Founder and Chairman of Campus Consortium, a global consortium of 2000+ colleges and universities.