Education technology is one of the fastest growing industries of 2021. According to the data from Grand View Research, the industry was worth $89.49 billion (£215.9 billion) in 2020 and is anticipated to expand by 19.9% from 2021 to 2028.
Edtech refers to the combined use of various technologies such as computers, tablets, virtual reality headsets, and computer applications. These are used in combination with the Internet to provide an improved learning experience and better academic outcomes. This presents new avenues not only for students, but for the world at large. Here are four new developments in edtech that could cause seismic shifts in the next few years:
1. New advantages thanks to edtech integration
Technology is continuously evolving, and its role in education is getting bigger. The addition of new technologies aims to make education easier for both teachers and students, and it seems to be doing its job.
Teachers can make use of teaching tools such as audiovisual content to make learning easier, and can also easily track a student’s progress using computers and apps. Edtech also has an added advantage of making learning fun for students through creative tools and learning platforms.
The Department of Education reports that more teachers are making use of a blended approach to improve teaching quality and student scores. While the industry may be relatively new, positive responses from all stakeholders seem to point towards further adoption.
2. Greater reliance on edtech due to remote learning
The past year has seen a greater push for edtech thanks to the spread of remote learning. The use of technology to deliver the curriculum has helped teachers reach more students in more creative ways. Schools are also adapting to these new tools on an institutional level, with greater budgets for digital learning tools and platforms.
The edtech industry is now valued in the billions, with global demand. The UK in particular has taken the lead, launching a plethora of startups which, according to Tech Nation, attracted 41% of European investments in 2019. From 2018 to 2019 alone, the UK edtech industry saw a 91% increase in investments, cementing its place as one of the fastest-growing industries in the world.
3. Virtual reality in distance learning
The future of learning is in Virtual Reality (VR). Forbes notes VR’s role as a tool that supports unique approaches to education. VR can be used to provide students with the opportunity to learn through immersion in a simulated environment, without the need for expensive trips or other resources.
For example, in history or geography, VR lets the student to literally jump into the simulated scenes from the past or visit places of study, which would normally be impossible. This could improve student participation and engagement, especially as digital learning becomes more popular.
4. Accessible edtech
Despite edtech’s advantages, full adoption of edtech tools may still be far off. This can be attributed partly to the digital divide— as widespread as many of these technologies are, several communities still lack access to these developments.
Companies are already responding to this by creating more accessible edtech. The New Globe platform makes use of a specially-designed tablet hosting a suite of learning management applications that are connected to New Globe services in the cloud. This approach simplifies the edtech process by enabling students to have access to learning materials, and teachers access to student data, all in one device.
Where is edtech headed?
Edtech is clearly the way of the future. Companies are growing, investments are coming in, and new developments are continuously emerging. With education transforming globally through technology and edtech innovating new solutions as the market demands, we’re likely to see greater shifts in tech and learning as the years go by.