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Entrepreneurship 2017-08-25

The Trend of Educational Technology is Catching Up Rapidly Among the Younger Generation- Nirvaan Birla

Today, conventional teaching methods are easily getting replaced with technologically advanced educational tools and equipments to raise the bar for quality education.

By Reetika Bose Feature Writer

With a legacy of fostering high-quality education, Birla Edutech Limited - a Yash Birla Group company has embarked on a journey to revolutionize education in India, by becoming educational transformers for learners across all educational segments - be it Preschool, K-12 school, continuous education, technological or vocational education.

In an exclusive with educationbiz.com, Mr. Nirvaan Birla – Head of Business Development – Birla Edutech, where he speaks about his Entrepreneurial journey and how educational technology and its usage is catching up rapidly amongst the younger generation.

Tell us about your Entrepreneurial journey. How did it start? Was there any inspiration behind this?

I started off right after finishing my school. I was working with a wellness industry and also started working with education initiative of The Yash Birla Group. I joined Birla Edutech Ltd. (BEL) right after my Masters in Management from University of Westminster, London.

With BEL, I restructured a few areas by cutting off few franchisees that couldn’t live up to the Educational standards that we provide. We have an on board educational curriculum development team of around 30 teachers who develop our unique curriculum which is an amalgamation of national and international boards making global standards. Along with this, BEL provides an unique teacher training programme for implementation of the BEL curriculum.

We make sure that everybody comes under one umbrella and receive the desired exposure and attention that they deserve.

Talking about curriculum, how do you plan to take the Pedagogical factors ahead in the long run?

In the long run, I plan to make all the elements very tech oriented. The reason being the Flip Classrooms and the Tech Classrooms are becoming more and more popular to be competitive in the space, for students in particular. It is a dire need for the Education space to be tech oriented in an online platform. Recently, we have tied up with a Robotics Company and they provide equipment and CBSE related curriculum which is mapped with ICT as planned by BEL. The students are explained through high tech models with high tech teaching staff, much different to the techniques through which we have studied. We also started 3D Virtual lessons in few of our schools in which all the lessons from 8-12 are in 3 dimensional form. For example, when the students are learning Geometry, they can actually see how the Pythagoras theorem works in 3D. This method leads to a simple learning technique with a 3 dimensional point of view.

So, according to me, “The more you imbibe applications in your learning, the more understanding and future oriented you are.”

As you mentioned that Birla Edutech has introduced a revolutionary 3D-virtual classroom; kindly brief us about the same.

Birla Edutech has introduced a revolutionary 3D virtual classroom in its Gopi Birla Memorial School in Mumbai. It is a 3D stereoscopic academic video program, especially designed to reduce complexity of learning subjects such as Mathematics and Science for students from Kindergarten to grade 12.

The one-of-its-kind, educational solution encompasses pioneering 3D curriculum content and e-library feature with online and offline availability. A self- curate comprehensive and interactive 3D content is user-friendly and compatible with all platforms. The educational videos cover over 2,000 topics of Mathematics, Biology, Physics and Chemistry subjects. It also provides a virtual laboratory for students to perform practical experiments in the safety of the classroom.

Tell us about the ventures that Edutech has undertaken so far.

We are already running a Sports Curriculum Program called SPEED, wherein it trains PE teachers all over India especially in rural areas. This initiative was mainly undertaken to make the teachers well informed about every sport apart from cricket and encourage the students in the same way.

The second tie up was for 3D Virtual Learning Program. We have tied up with CBM who are developing the audio visual lessons and we are mapping that with our in-house curriculum.

Our third tie up is from ‘Early Childhood Education Development’, in which we train preschool teachers and make them eligible to even pursue masters or directly teach in private schools or become entrepreneurs by setting up their own preschools.

I am also planning to add the LMS, the Learning Management System for which we have tied up with EduCloud, which is a Pune based software company and for this, all my school processes are taken online, like attendance, fees collection, exams and even the teacher parent orientation.

True transformation takes place only when teachers are well equipped and trained. Stretching it further, how do you think it can be made possible in the schools?

It needs to be given more attention to by the Edupreneurs and by the government as well. We come across videos online where there are teachers who are unable to spell certain words like geography or biology. This is mainly due to the lack of funding in Education in the government sector. Going by the records, the Indian Government has spent only 2-3% of their budget in Education this year. Everything from the standard of Living, to our economy, GDP, and growth of the country eventually depends on Education.

We have begun by focusing on Early Childhood Education Development, so that we get the opportunity to train teachers. We have an institute called Birla Institute for Teacher Training and we also have our franchise schools in Hyderabad and cities of Bihar wherein we train teachers to make them eligible to teach and impart education better. We have 51 franchise schools all over India as of this year, where we conduct 3 rounds of Teacher Training.

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