EdTech is now fast becoming an essential service and necessity as countries around the world have enforced lockdowns due to COVID-19, leaving millions of students restricted in their homes.
The Edtech sector is receiving bounties of investments from investors, PEs and others. According to a report by IBEF, by 2030, it is expected that global edtech expenditure will grow to $10 trillion. The growing popularity of online learning, further necessitated due to the nationwide lockdown, has provided a major push to the sector in India, which is expected to grow at a CAGR of 52 per cent to become a $2 billion industry by 2021.
As per the report, some of the key growth drivers that are supporting the Indian edtech sector are the ability to serve a large audience at significantly lower costs compared to traditional in-classroom learning, significant growth in the internet, and smartphone penetration across India.
Previously considered a secondary option, the edtech sector is now becoming an essential means to impart education around the world as countries have enforced lockdowns due to COVID-19. This scenario has led to a surge in educational technology companies and their services seeing a major increase in their usage. Numerous platforms have been launched, re-advertised, upgraded, and made even more accessible to the average consumers due to their growing demand in these unprecedented times.
Increase in Online Content Consumption:
The consumption of educational content has substantially increased among students with the use of edtech applications. After the pandemic, several universities and colleges transition into launching their online programs by partnering up with EdTech companies to help them power their online learning delivery.
According to the experts, the national lockdown has accelerated the adoption of EdTech which has been on a rise for the past few years, powered by smartphone and Internet penetration. It is predicted that the COVID-19 pandemic will accelerate the change in the EdTech sector, by doing what otherwise would have taken a decade or more, in a matter of a year or two.
The shift from offline teaching methods to online and blended education is likely to continue even beyond COVID-19 and become permanent. This will completely change the structure of the education system in India, for good.
Personalized Learning Approach:
A major switch the EdTech organizations will have to do is implement Big Data, machine learning & AI tech into their systems. Some OTT platforms like Netflix have taken over the entertainment industry by providing a more personalized experience to the consumers, the EdTech organizations will have to do something similar. Teaching practices will have to be innovated & evolved to make sure that the traditional approach of teaching includes digital ways too.Although online education via EdTech platforms has been around much before Covid-19, the crisis has been a major catalyst in enhancing the learning process not just for students and teachers, but for investors as well. Student enrolments and investments into the sector have both increased progressively. And a big surge in revenue during the pandemic period has also helped convert customers faster, and investors expect that the trend will continue as users get comfortable with digital learning.
Reasons for This Major Shift to Online Learning:
Over the past few months, as students are confined to home, digital education has evolved as the only way to continue learning. Also, full-scale return to schools doesn't look plausible in this academic year, it will continue to push online as the main medium of instruction especially for primary and secondary levels. But will this technology stick once students go back to school? Studies on the efficacy of online as a medium for school teaching are still emerging. Even though schools will reopen, supplemental and remedial learning will continue to grow online.