How has COVID-19 changed the Learning Scenario?

While countries’ COVID-19 infection rates vary, more than 1.2 billion children in 186 countries are being affected by school cancellations due to the pandemic.
With the abrupt shift away from the classroom in many parts of the world, some wonder if online learning adoption would continue post-pandemic and how such a shift might affect the global education industry. Even before COVID-19, education technology saw rapid expansion and adoption, with worldwide ed & tech investments reaching the US $18.66 billion in 2019 and the whole industry for online education expected to reach $350 billion by 2025. Since COVID 19, there has been a considerable increase in the utilisation of language apps, virtual tutoring, video conferencing tools, and online learning software.

Going digital was a quick and successful reaction to the situation. To provide continuity in learning, it is now vital to develop effective online platforms. However, in a developing country like India, where students’ socioeconomic backgrounds and educational institutions are vastly different, the transition has not been easy. As the crisis worsens, the digital divide has grown even wider, requiring immediate intervention from public and private sector participants. Students will stay engaged and active in the learning process if they have good teachers, updated curricula, and effective tools.

Beyond the highest echelon of institutional excellence, where private universities set best practices, Indian academia has long needed restructuring, even before the pandemic. Now is the time to reconsider the existing educational system. As a cornerstone, online learning is leading the push, and many new trends are gaining traction worldwide. Multidisciplinary and modular education with transferrable skills and individualised learning will be successful. Following the epidemic, a mix of e-learning and traditional face-to-face education may be used, supporting traditional universities and the ed & tech sector.

The scarcity of current teachers has always been a problem, and it is only becoming worse. Faculty members are being asked to rethink course material to satisfy current and future needs. As most typical institutions move away from traditional pedagogies, the demand for exceptional educators will influence how higher education recovers from the crisis.

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