Combining online and offline approaches to shaping the future of education is going to be ‘new normal’
Looking back 5-6 years, 2015 was a time when India surpassed 20 per cent internet penetration. For any growing society, once these thresholds are crossed, there is a sudden acceptance of technology-enabled services in education, healthcare, e-commerce, entertainment or travel. However, in the last 2 years of the epidemic the virtual mode of education and technology has accelerated so much that in the process, the sector has neglected the values and significance that comes with personalized education.
Half a decade ago, people were skeptical about participating in an online, live class, but now the whole country is on screen. The Internet has become a great enabler for some fundamental changes, and gradually usage patterns have changed. Adtech, right now, should not be overlooked in any aspect of life but can only be enriched with the exclusive content that comes with offline learning. This integration of online and offline learning methods is set to change the future of education.
The mixed learning model is the new normal
Digitized and integrated classes are playing an increasingly important role, reflecting the mixed learning model that we support and rapidly becoming the new norm. Many Indian EdTech companies are developing AI-enabled intelligent instructional designs and digital platforms to provide learning, testing and tutoring to students. The idea is to allow students to practice at their own pace and to identify and address gaps in their learning and knowledge.
Technology can play a huge role in your progress towards self-study, which is the key to learning. I personally believe that only attending online classes is an incomplete solution. Such models only work for the top 10 percent of students who are already inspired. But if you talk to the remaining 90 percent of students and their parents, none of them are happy because they are not getting full attention to learning. Many of them just watch class like movies and this problem is seen in geographical areas, even in metros where students are up-to-date with advanced technology.
So the problem is not technology. The gap that needs to be filled by teachers’ lectures combines with online tools for increased reach and personalization. There has to be a change from the one-size-fits-all approach to education, which has been in vogue for more than a century, to more rich and personal experiences. Combining the values of a professional teacher’s experience with artificial intelligence can lead to improved solutions for improving each student’s conceptual understanding and academic performance.
Over the past few years our country has been transformed, everyone realizes that the core curriculum, which was very traditional and theoretical, will not help in the future. And that’s where digital methods work because it provides easy access to some of this extra knowledge and exposure to new ideas. There are lots of free resources available online but with the intention of fixing the bugs, there are resources on the internet that can help you find the right path. In India at the moment, about 65 percent of the people have access to the Internet. In rural areas, education has been made possible by the Internet and it has allowed children to continue their education even in remote areas.
So using the internet as an augmentation that brings together different teachers, empowers them and connects them with their students regardless of location and situation, young people in India can certainly perform better in education, boosting both their confidence and knowledge.