Over the last few years, the Indian education system has undergone a drastic change. Technology has made inroads in classrooms and is defining the way for a revamped education system. With its value pegged to touch USD 30 billion over the next ten years, the stage is already set for innovation to redesign the future of learning.
Given the increasing market potential, let us deep dive into developments shaping up in the Indian edtech industry in 2023 and beyond:
1) Personalised Learning – For many years, we have perceived our educational system to be quite complex and rigid. Till now, it was all about traditional classroom learning, but with the introduction of digitalisation to the education system, we can see a more personalised form of learning taking shape. Learning is a fluid process, and no two individuals can learn at the same pace or in the same way. Students need platforms where they can learn according to their capabilities to improve their performance. Personalised learning, a powerful approach to education, allows students to choose topics based on their interests and preferences, track their progress and work on their weak areas. At the same time, it increases engagement, allows them to establish objectives for themselves, and receives immediate feedback. Further, these benefits make learning more interactive.
2) Gamification - Gamification is a method of solving problems by using the features of a game in education. It aids in enhancing students' engagement, improving skills, and optimising learning. It also helps to simplify complex concepts and improve retention. Apart from this, it fulfils learning objectives, encouraging students to aim higher and receive instant feedback. This game-based education method is expected to rise by around 32% by 2023. EdTech and gamification are concepts that will complement each other while allowing for more expansion in the industry.
3) Digital Infrastructure – No doubt the physical infrastructure of the school plays a significant role in giving students a supportive environment for their academic journey, but the digital infrastructure is poised to become foundational for the future of education. We have seen digital classrooms becoming popular in India over the last few years. By integrating technology such as interactive whiteboards or projectors, audio-visual capabilities, ICT labs or multimedia centres, educational games, classroom activities, management software, homework submission, review software, cloud-based e-learning initiatives, and so on, these technology-enabled classrooms (digital infrastructure) provide a plethora of new opportunities for teaching and learning. The Union Budget 2021–22 has also highlighted the need for the country's digital infrastructure for education by announcing a "National Digital Educational Architecture." With this strategy, a diversified educational ecosystem will be offered for the development of digital infrastructure. By making investments in digital infrastructure, we can ensure that everyone has access to a good educational system in the upcoming years.
4) Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality – The education sector is undergoing a massive transformation, and augmented and virtual reality are two major technologies driving this transformation. It makes effective learning possible by engaging students through motivating methods. It is also known to boost learning retention, personalise the learning experience, increase possibilities for experimentation, reduce reliance on learning by rote, empower educators and learners, and further encourage active learning. Virtual tools in a controlled environment assist students in simplifying difficult concepts. Further, with India's adoption still in its early stages, AR and VR technology are considered to represent the future of education.
5) Phygital Learning – Phygital learning is the blending of physical and digital forms of learning. It is an innovative approach which is transforming the current education scenario. In India, we have been following the offline method of schooling for long. Due to the pandemic, we have been compelled to look in a new direction or alternative where the traditional and digital approaches can be merged to provide more effective and personalised education. Today, animated audio-visuals are used to teach complex concepts, which helps in better retention and understanding. This method of interactive learning has helped teachers and the school management to keep a track of every student's performance resulting in improvements in a student’s academic performance. One of the best examples of phygital education in India is the O-labs, or online laboratories, run by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, where students can perform experiments without the need for a physical laboratory or equipment.
The edtech sector is anticipated to grow and transform in the coming years, largely due to the advent of digitalisation and the above-mentioned trends. With schools adopting and welcoming the digital route and methods to provide quality education, it can be safely said that these trends will shape the future of the new-age classroom.
Authors: Arindam Ghosh, Head of Strategy, Schoolnet and Devika Rae Chandra, Assistant Manager, Office of Strategy, Schoolnet.