Learning During and Post Covid-19: Cutting-Edge Technologies and Services Making It Possible

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It is no secret that the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has caused a massive shift in just about every aspect of life as we know it. This is fundamentally true, there is no getting around it or denying it. When the first cases of COVID-19 started to make news around the globe, it was not entirely certain how the virus would continue to spread and impact the rest of the world. It was not long before it became glaringly obvious that coronavirus was a virus that was going to change life as we knew it. And that is exactly what happened. 

The entire world has essentially been forced to modernise over time as the virus continued to spread. Practically every aspect of life as we know it has rapidly evolved – including, of course, education. While education had indeed been modernising before the global outbreak of COVID-19, the rising prominence of the virus around the globe forced modern education to once again evolve. Learning had to change again so that it would not halt altogether.

Blockchain Finds New Use Cases

Blockchain is a buzzword that doesn’t need a detailed explanation as this technology is steadily moving towards mainstream acceptance. That said, blockchain is the underlying layer for Bitcoin and other digital assets, and is now being used in many industries to disrupt and enhance various processes, as well as store and transmit data in a distributed, totally secure and more efficient way. 

The world’s leading universities and educational facilities have opened new learning programs and blockchain courses, with many institutions globally now offering blockchain degrees. The technology itself is being used for student data storage and making that data resistant to hacking. Another important use case here is the availability of improved authenticity that can make cheating virtually impossible to pull off, thus making it a thing of the past.

AR/VR Adds A New Flavor To The Learning Process

Immersive technologies such as Augmented and Virtual Reality are becoming ever more widespread. Total AR/VR spend is projected to reach $18.8 billion in 2020 and this market is expected to expand significantly over the next few years. This exciting development is suitable for many industries, but due to its ability to increase the visibility of information significantly, it has considerable potential for education. 

Some already use it in classrooms to make routine lessons more informative and memorable, given the immersion it delivers. Speaking of cost, AR is much more accessible now as it only requires a mobile phone or a tablet, while VR is quite a different thing – a continually improving, yet, costly technology, that usually requires sophisticated gear such as headsets, handheld controllers and a powerful PC. Moreover, AR is more suitable here as it can be a better way to share and  teach knowledge in many disciplines while also providing better in-campus orientation for students through a handheld device those students already own and have long since mastered.

Big Data Increases Study Efficiency

Big Data term is mostly used when speaking about predictive analytics or other methods of extracting value from information. Back in 2019, yearly revenue from this market reached the  $50 billion mark and is set to grow further. The world’s top firms such as IBM, Splunk, Dell, Oracle, and Accenture operate in this field as major providers. Several decades ago, working with student data on paper was a complicated challenge. Today, we have technologies such as Big Data to drastically help deal with any issues when it comes to the management and analysis of information. Moreover, the global big data market is forecast to grow to more than $100 billion by 2027, doubling its size over 2018 levels. The upcoming personalization of learning experience should also  result in much better study performance.

Internet Of Things Making Life On Campus More Comfortable

The IoT sector is spreading worldwide and will definitely see more demand from educational facilities. Over the next five years, the total data volume of connected IoT devices globally is forecast to reach an incredible 79.4 zettabytes! As the number of gadgets and devices grows at an astonishing rate, IoT will help to automate so many processes with an ever growing range of smart devices: from smart lighting systems set across the campus to smart informational kiosks, tracking vehicles, and foot traffic to optimize load and using smart electricity grids. IoT-based security solutions, including remote monitoring and biometric-based authentication, can be implemented too, and there are yet still IoT-based solutions we haven’t even thought of yet but which will soon become commonplace as this sector evolves at an ever faster pace. 

AI & Chatbots Make The Educational Experience Smoother

Artificial Intelligence is currently driving modern global digital transformation to new levels of sophistication and maturity, and institutions are following the trend. AI perfectly describes a set of technologies that enable the creation of intelligent software or hardware such as machine learning, computer vision, NLP, and more. Nowadays, the  global AI software market  is experiencing huge growth, reaching a forecast size of22.6 billion U.S. dollars

AI proves to be an irreplaceable assistant when it comes to next-gen learning systems and new learning tools, which not only provide answers to students but provide them with clear explanations and step-by-step guides in text, audio, video, AR and VR formats. Such a learning approach will increase students’ efficiency, as they can learn anywhere and at any time.

Chatbots are little digital helpers that have experienced a huge boom and nowadays help to answer questions in many fields – from healthcare and tourism to education and plenty more in between. The widespread implementation of this technology in universities globally can help to handle quick basic questions that students usually have, thus reducing staff workload. During last year’s survey, it was estimated that 3.25 billion digital voice assistants are now used in different gadgets around the world. Due to this forecast, this number will be higher than the planet’s population as it’s projected to reach around eight billion units by 2023!

App Developments Embracing The Pace Of Changes

The path to successful transformation in any field lies through mistakes and challenges. The ongoing shift to an all-digital society is imminent, accelerated by COVID-19, with humanity to sooner or later accept the benefits of remote work and education. Despite old habits and well-known comfortable approaches that die hard in the wake of something new and better, the outcome and convenience of digital living is well worth it, with its benefits to remain intertwined with our “offline” lives more deeply than ever. Utilizing new tools and the best solutions to digital education will help you to be among the first adopters while improving your skills, spearheading success, where others fail and give up too easily, or too early.

Once a privilege, education is now a global need that has to be easily met. At the forefront of innovations aimed at democratizing education, by making it accessible for all, are e-learning EdTech products. 

In the world of online language learning, Preply is one of the leading platforms that makes knowledge affordable, accessible, and deeply personalized. Preply offers a global marketplace that pairs over 15,000 verified tutors of 160 nationalities with thousands of language learners choosing from over 50 languages taught. The platform is easy to use with its sleek user interface, and leverages machine learning to provide the best recommendations in order to make the learning experience effective and enjoyable. To date, over two million classes have been taken on Preply and that number is rapidly increasing with the spike in demand for high quality online language learning experiences.

“The present-day society realizes two simple realities. First, education is a never-ending process that lasts a lifetime. Second, we prefer to do things in a matter of clicks. Learning goes far beyond cramming and memorizing formulas and terms. Exploration requires finding a perfect tutor — a match that inspires. In this area, technologies make sure the win-win encounter happens. Preply has a mission to bring education in every household and every device. Regardless of the age, background, location, or level of knowledge, a person can delve into foreign languages at any time in a few simple steps”

Today, as schools are shut, and everything – including studying and teaching, transforms into an ever better online reality, the private tutoring platform Preply tripled demand on tutoring hours and has recently raised $10M. 

The Australian Vygo educational service, along with Aula and, Bibliu are unique, “new school” university edtech startups with exceptional success during COVID-19, and are working together at Coventry University to create the new standard in digital universities. 

The Vygo platform helps to improve student success by providing a single online space where students can connect with all of their institution’s mentors, tutors and advisors. Whether it’s about on-demand availability, spoken languages, background or common interests, the platform enables students to find the right person for them at any moment. Universities are empowered to build and nurture learning ecosystems, where the student support network is salient. Vygo hosts the full array of peer and staff support services and provides a safe environment where guidance is always there throughout all stages of student life at uni. 

Aula supports academics by combining community with active learning in a hybrid learning experience that is always available, from any device. Learners are more actively engaged, have a deeper sense of belonging, and are less likely to drop out. By offering a learning experience with the flexibility to fit around other priorities, institutions can attract students they previously couldn’t reach.

Another software platform, built for students by students, Bubliu provides eTextbooks that work for academic libraries. A digital educational service that enables university students to search across thousands of textbooks and monographs, engage with each other and their professors, making learning far more effective. The platform creates an experience that paper textbooks can’t really offer: allowing users to surface information based on any query and it allows for a collaboration aspect with synchronized commenting.  

Although online learning has been a reality for rural and regional students for years, if not decades, while online university courses have boomed over the last decade, the COVID-19 crisis has accelerated things to a whole new level, making online education safer, more affordable and more efficient than ever, while highlighting the incredible world of apps that is instrumental in making online learning the best place to be.

Cutting-Edge Mobile Apps Improve the Education Experience

The digital age makes it possible to put a huge amount of data into a single gadget, and even more so when that gadget is connected to the cloud, as most are today. Technology has made it possible to get rid of outdated physical, educational books, and materials, paving the way to continuously updating digital textbooks.

Today’s learning trends indicate that students are now using online tutoring platforms more than ever before. Researchers suggest that remote learning increases retention of information while taking less time – especially important in a world where the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the study process forevermore.

For example, since 1948, over 100 million English language learners have used the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, to develop their English skills for work and study. In 2020, it has been totally redefined by a digital app. The app helps learners better build up their vocabulary and develop more natural-sounding English, any time and anywhere that’s needed. The dictionary contains over 86,000 words, 95,000 phrases with 112,000 meanings and 237,000 examples making it an authoritative and comprehensive reference source for English. The 10th edition app is available across most mobile platforms including any type of user.

Indeed, during challenging times, remote education is expected to remain a very prospective direction for VC investors. By 2020, 14 EdTech companies had a valuation of over $1 billion. In India alone, 14 Edtech startups raised US $500 million of funding!

Summary

COVID-19 changed the world as we knew it in just about every possible way, including education. Online learning was in effect before the global pandemic began to spread around the globe, however, the virus created an incredibly unique approach to online learning that was frankly unprecedented at this time. Apps and websites have risen from the ground up, revolutionising and vastly improving the educational experience for individuals around the globe. Learning online has never been easier thanks to these apps and websites. Best of all is the realisation that while they are no doubt impressive so far, this is going to prove to be nothing in comparison to what is yet to come. Learning apps and websites are just getting started. Even in the most challenging of circumstances (i.e. an international pandemic), learning is flourishing and thriving – and so are students – thanks to these apps and websites.

 

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