7 Modern Trends To Look Out For in EdTech Industry in 2019
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With the beginning of each new year, a storm of articles talking about trends which will dominate the coming year swarm the Internet. Taking inspiration from the same, I’ve come up with seven trends that will be driving the EdTech industry forward in 2019.
#1 Augmented Reality
For the uninitiated, augmented reality refers to an enhanced version of reality where live images of real-world environments overlap with superimposed computer-generated images. This offers an enhanced view of the real-world to the user having a direct effect on the person’s perception of reality in real-time. Remember Pokemon Go? The augmented reality game app broke all kinds of records and was once incredibly popular on both the Apple and Google Play Store.
As per a recent study by AR Insider, the number of AR-compatible smartphones is set to be 1.5 billion by the end of 2020 and shoot up to 3.4 billion by 2023. This should come as no surprise that the adoption of AR in educational apps is increasing year by year. In fact, teachers are of the opinion that EdTech solutions will ingrain augmented reality seamlessly within the confines of a classroom leading to a more holistic, multidisciplinary approach.
Augmented reality is set to a safe bet for the future with tech giants like Apple, Google, and Microsoft heavily investing in the development of this technology. What does this mean for those belonging to the education industry?
More help with grading thereby increased time for other activities
Immediate feedback for students
Better research tools
#2 Virtual Reality in Education
With the advent of immersive technology, virtual reality is gaining momentum in education. And with virtual reality set to become more accessible and affordable due to a drop in equipment prices, it is not hard to imagine higher education institutions implementing virtual reality within the realm of classrooms in the near future.
Just imagine the possibilities. The children can experience immersive 360 environments and engage in real-world exploration. Remember that trip to the zoo where you saw a gorilla? With the help of virtual reality, you can observe gorillas in their natural habitat. What if there’s a space enthusiast in the class? You can take him on a trip to Mars!
Coming to gamification, this has been catching up quite fast and quickly being integrated into classrooms. Gamification, simply put, is a process wherein game mechanics are applied to a system to make it more game-like to encourage participation, engagement, and loyalty.
Apart from giving a boost to classroom interaction, gamification also plays a significant part in helping a student understand the context and outcome of a particular situation. Imparting learning in a gaming scenario helps students improve their powers of retention and comprehension. Take Duolingo for example. It has combined language learning with an attractive gaming system where each lesson contains a variety of speaking, listening, translation, and multiple choice challenges. Apart from that, you have access to in-lesson grading, a streak count which keeps track of the number of days in a row you spend learning a language, and hearts which helps keep your lessons alive when you answer incorrectly.
#4 Immersive Learning
With the popularity of augmented and virtual reality, immersive learning has sprung up as one of the hottest EdTech technologies which are revolutionizing the education system. And it's not just educational institutions which have been left amazed by the potential of this technology, even corporates realize its promise. They can plan better training programs for their employees making those corporate seminars more engaging and fun affairs.
Let’s talk some numbers, shall we? Analysts predict the expected market value for immersive learning to be close to USD 12 billion and set to dominate educational technology for the corporate training market.
With the cost of immersive learning technology becoming more economical, and the quality of tools improving, educators will be able to integrate and adopt this technology in their lesson plans. The possibilities are quite exciting as immersive learning can be applied in varied disciplines ranging from STEAM education to language learning.
#5 Improving Accessibility to EdTech
EdTech needs to be the cornerstone for our future generations where learners receive opportunities to thrive in 21st-century careers solving 21st-century challenges. The aim should be to make learning technology accessible to more people. One of the ways this can be achieved is by lowering the cost of EdTech which will be helpful in penetrating the developing world.
#6 Offline Solutions
Seeing as reliable Internet connectivity is still elusive to 43.9% of the world’s population in 2019, focus on building offline solutions that don’t require an Internet connection should be of paramount concern. These offline solutions would prove to be a boon for students who have yet to experience new EdTech technologies helping improve their engagement, knowledge retention, individual learning, collaboration, and other life skills.
And how can we forget STEAM? An educational approach designed to integrate STEAM subjects with the school curriculum, the purpose of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics) education is to balance the divide in global skill shortages is STEAM-related fields.
Students learn to think outside the box, engage in hands-on learning, work collaboratively with others, express their creative ideas, and empower them to unleash their innovative skills to bring about change in the world
Time to Wrap Up
Suffice to say, EdTech technology is here to stay and will be the driving force in not just the years to come but for the foreseeable future. Here’s hoping for a bright one for all of us!