by the team at Career Karma
You might think hell is about to freeze over when you hear teenagers saying they want to back to school, but that is the current reality. Students tried remote learning, but a large section of them are jonesing to get back to school. There might be some social aspects to their reasoning, but it’s important to note the development of students’ desires to be in the classroom and continue learning.
Ambitious students keep building their skills throughout their careers by continuing their education. Covid-19 halted the progress of in-person learning but increased educators’ belief in the virtues of online learning. Online learning isn’t always the first choice for students and teachers, but it gets the job done. Mindsets are shifting from avoiding online learning to embracing it since Covid-19 forced online learning, and teachers put in more efforts to enhance the outcomes.
Covid-19’s long term impact on the education industry will increase investment in edtech. The concert, movie, and technology conference South By Southwest holds an annual competition for learning initiatives, most of which are edtech companies combing technology and educational outcomes. The global pandemic saw educators, students, schools, and tech companies ramping up their efforts to enhance learning.
Increased Focus on Equity in Education
Getting access to quality education is more difficult for students in low-income areas, both urban and rural. Parents who have to work multiple jobs or can’t work from home have a harder time supporting their students’ education, especially if parents can’t afford laptops, desks, or other essential supplies for their child. Overall, the education of students in poorer areas suffered more than those in affluent communities.
Educators will focus their efforts into getting students more tools to help them learn online. Culturally responsive teaching and grants for computers and learning tech will help students access the same quality education that students in richer areas take for granted. The inequalities exist past high school as well.
Focus on the Right Schools
The right schools for students is an overlooked aspect of education. Programs aren’t one size fits all. Adapting to students’ needs increases the chances for students from diverse backgrounds or different learning styles. Future programs, similar to SXSW 2019 EDU winner Edmit, will get students to focus on colleges and trade schools that support their learners all the way to their graduation. The cheapest online degrees might not be the best fit for students who need additional support.
Meeting the Needs of Learners
Covid-19 affected everyone differently, requiring educators to be more flexible. Teachers are seeing the benefits of meeting students where they are at. Overloading or underwhelming students doesn’t yield the best results. Students at higher degree levels understand their needs better. Visual learners don’t process lectures as well as they would seeing an experiment or reading the material themselves.
Covid-19 forced educators to record or distribute online learning materials for students to learn at their own pace. This increased flexibility produces better results than the one-size-fits-most model. Teachers will continue to offer materials in online formats for students to review, consume multiple times, or see different presentations of the same material.
Increased Acceptance of Online Degrees
Professionals, just like students, worked remotely as well. This divergence from normal in-person meetings gave companies a perspective of the advantages of remote work. Companies realized that the work done at home and if the office is largely the same. This realization will bleed over into education as well. Companies will continue to prioritize degrees and awards over the method through which the new applicant learned.
Better Online Resources
Software companies immediately saw the potential of the edtech industry. Education is one of the areas in which people are willing to contribute large portions of their finances. In short, people will always spend on education. Companies will compete to develop comprehensive programs to enhance learning through technology.
Online learning increased the reliance on virtual conferencing that needed tools that businesses didn’t necessarily desire—the expansion of video conferencing increased competition for companies like Zoom, Google, and Windows. The competition will increase the quality of education by providing teachers and learners with better ways of communication.
These tools aren’t only for online learning but will improve in-person learning as well.
Covid-19 Is Moving Education Forward
The global pandemic forced the education industry to advance its systems almost overnight. The changes were quickly adapted and implemented for the betterment of the industry as a whole. From kindergarten students to master’s degree candidates, edtech is increasing the quality of education.