Consumer Discretionary

Knowledge Is The New Currency, And It Can Buy Anyone A New Future

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<p style="text-align: justify;">Knowledge is Power!</p><p style="text-align: justify;">A phrase that has been used on a global basis and by every culture around the world. Knowledge and learning provide new opportunities for individuals to improve their socio-economic outlook and start new careers within in-demand roles.</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 14pt;">Online Learning</span>&nbsp;</h2><p style="text-align: justify;">The global higher education sector is valued at over US$2.2 trillion but is unevenly distributed. The world&rsquo;s most lucrative markets (where employers highly value education and it is accessible but also costs the most) are the United States and Western Europe.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">However, online learning has helped to create access for learners worldwide to connect with content that can lead them to better lives.</p><p style="text-align: justify;"><strong>Edtech Platforms</strong></p><p style="text-align: justify;">Today, online learning platforms can provide learning opportunities in the form of open courses, or MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), Professional Certificates and even Master&rsquo;s degrees from institutions like Stanford University, Imperial College London, MIT, Harvard University, IIMs, IITs and many more global players.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">In addition, certificates of completion are available from global technology companies that create job-ready candidates, from Meta, Amazon Web Services, Google IT, IBM, and Oracle. All are available online and priced to be accessible.</p><p style="text-align: justify;"><strong>Applications of Edtech Platforms</strong></p><p style="text-align: justify;">As the world coped with the covid 19 pandemic, the use of online learning went from being a poor relative of in-person learning to an entirely acceptable alternative.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">Universities worldwide moved swiftly to create online courses and degree programs for their students, as did the corporate world for their staff members.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">The content was placed onto key existing, or start-up learning platforms, with the giants in the sector being Coursera (100 million registered learners), edX (41 million registered learners) and many others.&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;"><strong>Widely Accessed Online Learning Courses&nbsp;</strong></p><p style="text-align: justify;">So, what is the world interested in learning about?&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;">Research shows that online learners' six significant domains are Business skills, Technology, Data Sciences &amp; Analytics, Healthcare, Engineering and Education.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">Of course, there is an exceptionally long &lsquo;tail&rsquo; of content after these key domain areas. Without a doubt, some people also want to learn about &lsquo;Medieval Poetry&rsquo; from a well-renowned university.&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;">Online learning makes this possible with an easy-to-access platform, with respected content, employer accepted credentials, delivered by recognized higher education institutions and at a much more affordable price than the on-campus version.</p><p style="text-align: justify;">Online learning is here to stay and will be part of the higher education landscape going forward. There will be more blended learning and technology to enhance the learner experience and create new opportunities for different professionals and students to connect with topical content.</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 14pt;">Edtech Platforms- Scalable Solution</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">The world cannot afford to build the number of new higher education institutions required to educate the growing population, and online learning provides a scalable solution. In a world where digital is the new normal, even traditional job roles require a new level of learning and re-learning. This is also part of the learning revolution and the use of online to deliver it globally.&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;">As a student or professional learner, the choice is limitless in terms of available edtech platforms. However, online &nbsp;learners are also very aware of the topics that will get them a new role, a better role or a promotion. They also recognise the big &lsquo;brand&rsquo; academic and industry content providers they may want on their resume, which a new employer will recognize.&nbsp;</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 14pt;">Investing in Edtech</span> &nbsp;&nbsp;</h2><p style="text-align: justify;">For anyone looking to invest in the edtech world or create a start-up, there are some signals to watch out for to ensure you are not just going through a cash-burn journey while trying to build that elusive edtech &lsquo;Unicorn&rsquo;!&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;">These signals include:</p><ul><li style="text-align: justify;">the learning products you are going to offer</li><li style="text-align: justify;">the learner audience you will target, the content, the credentials, the partners, the business model, and revenue share arrangement</li><li style="text-align: justify;">your approach to marketing</li><li style="text-align: justify;">all-important registered learner base and being able to fill the top of the funnel.&nbsp;</li></ul><p style="text-align: justify;">Edtech is here to stay, and it is helping people to change their lives. However, not all edtech will survive as a shakeup, like the dot-com boom and bust of the early 2000s showed us, is inevitable. In the meantime, operating business models work, and even more that look shiny and prosperous will have used enormous resources with little to show for the efforts.</p><p style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><em>This article was contributed by our expert <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/dil-sidhu-ba084118/">Dil Sidhu</a> &nbsp;</em></span></p><p style="text-align: justify;">&nbsp;</p><h3 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 18pt;">Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Dil Sidhu&nbsp;</span></h3><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;">1. What is the technology used in EdTech?</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">Edtech technology can be either bespoke or built on an existing Learning Management System (LMS) like Canvas, Blackboard or Moodle. Coursera and edX have created their own custom technology to manage the learner and content creator interaction, but both also rely on cloud computing to ensure they can be flexible for growth as and when it is required.</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;">2. What are EdTech products?&nbsp;</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">Edtech 'products' refers to the range of available learning types. a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) is a product in addition to professional certificates, specializations (a collection of 3-7 courses to allow a deeper and wider exploration of a given topic), executive education certificates, Bachelor's degrees, Master's degrees, and PhDs are all examples of edtech products.&nbsp;</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;">3. What are five major innovative educational technologies?&nbsp;</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">Major edtech innovations coming include:</p><ul><li style="text-align: justify;">AI and ML engagement with learners to motivate their progress</li><li style="text-align: justify;">Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality to create new learning experiences</li><li style="text-align: justify;">AI-driven chat bots that support learners as they go through the journey</li><li style="text-align: justify;">Concise mobile applications that can let learners use any device, anywhere, anytime</li><li style="text-align: justify;">Social media connectivity that allows online learners to connect easier and more meaningfully with fellow online learners</li></ul><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;">4. What are the biggest challenges facing online education today?&nbsp;</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">Getting new registered learners into the 'top of funnel' along with having the right content, from the right creation partners, at the right price and with the right credential.</p><h2 style="text-align: justify;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;">5. What are the struggles of students in online learning?&nbsp;</span></h2><p style="text-align: justify;">How to motivate yourself to keep going. Online learning is a use of an individual's 'disposable time allocation', which means you can use 2 hours to continue learning an online course or to watch a couple of episodes of a tv show or a movie. How to keep learners meaningfully engaged!</p><p style="text-align: justify;">&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: justify;">&nbsp;</p>
KR Expert - Dil Sidhu