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The educational landscape has changed over the last few years. Traditional institutions are facing growing demand to prepare students for rapid economic challenges, as well as social changes, new jobs and technological appearance. According to the World Economic Forum’s The Future of Jobs Survey 2020, by 2025, 85 million jobs may be displaced by a shift in the division of labor between humans and machines, while 97 million new roles may emerge that are more adapted to the new division of labor between humans, machines and algorithms.
That means changes are inevitable.
Here’s a look at what the future of education is and what five major trends students, educational institutions and EdTech startups alike should be prepared for.
1. Creating interaction between students and professors is crucial
MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) have grown rapidly in previous years and are continually growing. Their easy availability and flexibility have engaged millions of students. Despite the increasing popularity of MOOCs, they are faced with plenty of challenges — including the enormous dropout rate, which varies between 91% and 93%, according to a study from the Open Computer Science journal.
The feeling of isolation and the lack of real-time collaboration with mentors both contribute to the high dropout rate, according to the study. That’s why building interaction with professors as well as strong teamwork are critical to avoid discouraging students and pushing them to drop out.
The future belongs to those courses and to EdTech startups that create an environment where a team of teachers and mentors will support students along the way.
2. Employment is a key result of education
Education for the diploma, for a line on a CV or for bragging rights is a thing of the past. In a world that’s changing at a rapid pace, people need real practice — and ideally, to practice while studying. Courses that understand this will have a better position. But how do you implement this strategy? Try creating a test environment in which the student will be given tasks by real brands and companies in tandem with learning, performing and getting feedback.
Education should be constantly updated and adjusted to the market’s requirements. The ultimate educational result is employment, not a diploma or certificate.
Therefore, along with providing the necessary up-to-date skills, EdTech startups should teach their people how to market themselves to employers, write a CV, conduct themselves at an interview and evaluate their work. Employees should interviews at different companies and find out for themselves what the employer requires, then startups should adapt the curriculum to those expectations.
Income Share Agreement (ISA) courses are also becoming popular. That means a student, instead of paying for education, reimburses the cost of the course after graduation with a percentage of the salary for the time needed until the agreed amount is repaid. This is a huge motivation for EdTech startups to be more focused on the outcome.
Related: How Edtech Helps Students Get Good Job Opportunities
3. ‘Edutainment:’ Mixing education and entertainment
Another way to increase engagement in the learning process is to add some entertainment components. After all, who said adults don’t like games? Generations Y and Z grew up on Dandy Games, Tetris and Tamagotchi. Some still don’t mind playing tanks or saving the planet from a zombie invasion, while others enthusiastically build a new house in a game of The Sims. So why not make education just as interesting?
According to a comprehensive research report by Market Research Future, the edutainment market size is expected to cross $10.11 billion by 2025 at a compound annual growth rate of 11.61%.
Related: Edutainment: How Virtual Reality is Disrupting the Education Sector
Edutainment is common both outside and inside classrooms and exists in different types of media. A number of its advantages are the encouragement of personalized learning, the enhancement of visualization and creativity, a greater awareness of theoretical topics, real-time learning and the benefits of paperless learning.
Education should be multi-format (such as video, games, text, audio, social media and interactive tasks), and students should be able to study not only at home but also on the road. Educational startups should think about how to adapt content to the format of each site, which leads to increased efficiency.
4. Updating employee’s talents and skills
Education needs to be integrated into the work routine, and companies should focus now on upgrading their workers’ skills — because in the next five years, employee skills and roles will change, and it’s crucial to be prepared for that.
According to the Future of Jobs report, employers expect to offer reskilling and upskilling to just over 70% of their employees on average by 2025. At our Refocus company, executives spend at least an hour a day reading books, as this is what helps to switch to operations, look at situations from a different perspective, and zoom-out.
5. Networking as a part of the educational process
The education of the future should provide impressive networking for alumni. Based on the Great Business Schools 2021 study, 46% of job seekers find jobs through traditional networking. Moreover, at least 70% of jobs are not published online, yet most people spend 70% to 80% of their time scanning through digital job boards versus talking to employers in person.
EdTech companies should therefore regularly hold live meetings where students, alumni and employees can exchange experiences, collaborate and cooperate.
By 2030, about 800 million people will be unemployed due to robotics and automation, according to McKinsey & Company research. That’s why education startups and institutes need to adapt their curricula to the new challenges now to give more practice and focus on employability.
Related: 6 Tips for Getting a New Job