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Since the current education system got established in the 18th century, the education industry has not experienced an evident transformation. However, the coronavirus pandemic came to change this fact.Possibly in the last three years, before the pandemic started, we were starting to perceive some slight changes, especially in kindergarten education. But, these were just the result of cherished contributions by modern academics like Ken Robinson and the growth and acceptance of alternative methods of education like Montessori.
Yet, with the coronavirus pandemic acting as a powerful driver of change not only for this but for every industry around, we can assure you now that a significant transformation is finally coming. Although still, we cannot see the changes. For now, we can identify major trends and areas of transformation based on key needs that the pandemic has unveiled. Here, we discuss four of them:
The current situation has challenged parents to look for other alternative models of education that perhaps could result in more effective learning for their kids. Thus, it’s been wonderful to see how parents have tipped over online literature to find and experiment with different instructional strategies. However, what has been even more interesting to witness is parents finding themselves with alternative strategies that originated decades behind, like the flipped classroom model (which actually base theory originated in 1993). Flipped classrooms encourage students to learn in advance content (now through video and tech) and later on in class have discussions with other students about previously studied content. In this way, students are mainly the leaders of their education, while teachers have very low relevance. This educational model getting increasingly popular, connects with the idea of students designing their education. This is an interesting notion to think about today if we consider that in the future, students will be taking a “DIY- do it yourself” approach to their tuition.
Mentoring programs with career development purposes have been popular for years.
But in the last few years, the world has turned more globalized and aware of the importance of inclusivity practices. These programs are created with the vision to generate opportunities for individuals across countries. Thus, these have switched to online mode (e-mentor programs). Now with the pandemic, the many purposes of e-mentoring programs have widened. Just think of all the kids having trouble learning at home and in need of tutoring or think about all the elderly groups that have been forced by circumstances to go online, so they didn’t feel alone. Today, there are plenty of opportunities in this area. As new specialized platforms to satisfy the needs of these demographics can be developed.
New useful and immersive apps
A few years ago, we witnessed an app boom. Almost every company, middle or big-sized, wanted to come up with its app, and many of us thought the world was going to work mainly through apps. That didn’t happen at that moment. But with the pandemic's arrival, everyone had to go looking for all those apps from the education field developed years back to assist their needs. In the early pandemic days, everything related to homework solving, tutoring, assisting teachers in grading, and sharpening skills was considered very useful. However, a monotonous online mode has also stressed the need for finding other effective ways to capture students’ attention. Thus, the arrival of apps to the mainstream incorporating augmented reality is now imminent.
Yielding internet connection to everyone is the biggest challenge that this pandemic has shown as urgent to solve. Currently, there are many remote locations around the world without the possibility of internet access, and many children are at risk of learning loss. Thus, companies like Google and Facebook have accelerated their plans to provide internet connectivity. This July, these companies finally launched their first internet access commercial project in Kenya. Although, their kind of solution (designing balloons to launch to the stratosphere) might be hard or expensive to replicate or scale. There are other asynchronous solutions to be designed. On-demand videos or podcasts are solutions that not only could serve children in need today but could be very useful as well to students interested in blended learning models (like flipped classrooms).
CEO at Treendly.com