There is still a big shift going on in the world of education. The trend of digitization has already hit education a few years ago, but it doesn’t seem it’s like slowing down. So, while looking at what works best right now, we also have to take the future into account. That’s why we’ll discuss both the importance of this phenomenon and the trends you have to keep an eye on.
What is the meaning of digitization?
Digitization is, in essence, the process of making something that isn’t digital, digital. This also means that something can be scaled and distributed more freely, without a loss in quality. It has a positive effect on making knowledge and skills available worldwide.
Why is digitization important for education?
We are big fans of education, obviously. The digitization process is something that makes it possible for people to share knowledge with other people. Not only can you share it with people close to you, but you can also share it with people around the world.
A lot of people have the goal of changing the world for the better. Digitization and digital education make this possible. You can help somebody by giving them the knowledge they need to succeed. Do probably heard this saying before:
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.“
You might think this is an outdated statement, but it holds true to this very day.
What are the trends of digitization in education?
Analytics are key to successful education
This is a big change from the usual. Analytics will start to decide what you learn, where you learn and how you learn. Why? Because AI will become better at predicting what skills and knowledge you need in order to succeed. Say goodbye to counsellors at school and let the computer do the talking.
Algorithms are getting better at predicting the stuff we might like to buy or need in the future. The same will happen in education. These kinds of algorithms will learn our preferences and passions and will recommend things we might like to learn.
Location and time are less relevant than before
Following an online course is already a favoured way of learning for a lot of people. The flexibility of having everything in digital environments make location and time irrelevant. You can study online, whether you’re in Australia or on Antartica and whether it’s noon or midnight.
This is a big change for regular educational institutions as well. They can focus on sharing more knowledge, not only with their students but also with students that wouldn’t otherwise be able to. We hear it a lot: “online education makes classic education less relevant.” We disagree because classic education can both learn and gain a lot from going with the trend of digitization.
The trend forces educational institutions to think bigger. It’s time for them to look behind their “normal” target locations and think national or even global. That’s a good thing.
A bigger focus on speed and availability is needed
When almost everything is online, sharable, streamable and downloadable, it puts big pressure on browsers, computers and the network. This is also why parties that offer online learning need to keep an eye on speed and availability. Having low speeds and being offline negates all the pros of having your knowledge online.
Speed is needed on the platform to load pages quickly, but also to make sure the customer experience is optimal. A user will start doing other stuff while the page loads. This interrupts the flow of learning, making it less effective.
We also said that having everything online makes it possible to learn in Shakira’s words: “Whenever, wherever”. This holds true whenever the service is available. It could well be the case that the platform is unavailable at exactly the time the student intended to learn.
Say goodbye to complete courses and hello to microlearning
Digitization also promotes globalization, which is very good! It means a lot more knowledge will be spread around the world. But it also means a lot more people will make studying a part of their travelling lifestyle. Learning at a classic educational institution makes no sense when you’re travelling the world. This means education will be focussed more on microlearning.
Following a course at an institution means learning a lot of things in order to master a skill. Microlearning brings it back to its essence. You learn only what you need to know in order to complete your task. This makes it much more efficient, especially useful for people who don’t have a lot of time available for learning.
These changes are happening right now
Times are changing, also for education. We are sure a lot more upsets and potentially amazing developments will occur. That’s why we are excited about the future of education. What changes do you see coming and how do you feel about the digitization of education?