COVID-19 Effects on Education
COVID-19 has changed the way of our life with various disruptions in our day-to-day activities. One such aspect is education. With various educational institutes closing campus operations, many learners have suffered from the lack of face-to-face interactions. Globally, different approaches have been taken. In some places, online learning models have been adopted to keep the students socially distanced from one another. Others have tried options like taking academic breaks and keeping campuses partially open via a hybrid approach. All of these options have displayed varying degrees of success in different countries. The challenge of the hour is to ensure the safety of the people while making sure that there is little to no loss of quality in the education offered.
Digital Education Trends
In pre-COVID times, around 20% of the countries had the e-learning options available. This trend is bound to change given that COVID-19 is here to stay for the foreseeable future. There are however challenges in increasing digital education around the world. In Europe and the US, internet networks are robust and widespread but in the developing world, there are many without internet access. Furthermore, the environment in homes is an important factor as well. Students need a quiet place to take online classes. This is often a luxury in large families living in small homes. Ultimately, lack of internet networks (including 3G and 4G) and socioeconomic factors can derail the rise of digital education, so they need to be addressed accordingly.
Growth of e-Learning Startups
Problems often present opportunities to innovate and come up with different creative solutions. That is why growth in e-learning startups has been observed. This includes services such as online course platforms, e-learning software development services, and video conferencing tools. Investors see such startups as potential winners for the future as they are expected to become an essential part of daily lives. Subsequently, a huge influx of money has occurred in e-learning startups. That being said, there are concerns that e-learning may become mushroom businesses so it is important to have a unique selling proposition that would make the operations sustainable in the long term.
Downsides of e-Learning growth
Despite the favorable reaction from investors, the e-learning landscape does face some problems as well. Due to cutbacks and downsizing in the corporate sector, a lucrative section of the customer base is shrinking in size. Moreover, the demand for e-learning has been abrupt which meant that many of the businesses that offer e-learning services were unprepared to handle the growth due to limitations of their infrastructure. As it stands, things are in transition and the road to stability goes through addressing the problems of the e-learning industry which have been accentuated by the rapid growth in terms of demand.
The prospects of education via digital channels look positive for the coming year or so. There are challenges and problems as well but the benefits and its potential to revolutionize education in general far outweigh the negatives. That is why it is fair to say that education in COVID times has an interesting outlook.