Extramarks.com director and chief executive officer Rohit Jain said, “There had been requests from non-CBSE schools and students seeking after hours academic support. About 250,000 students currently access the services on the portal. The syllabi of state schools are broadly based on NCERT guidelines. The content needs to be localised,” he said, adding the content would be brought out in regional languages.
Online tuitions, though a relatively new concept in India, is fast catching on as it reduces travel hassles for students, he said. The portal recently launched a virtual classroom to simulate classroom ambience and has plans to invest about Rs 25 crore this year for creating content.
The Noida-based company has got the requirement of funds underwritten from an investment company, which in turn will get the required investment as equity or debt in two months, he said.
The teaching would be one-to-many, like in the traditional classrooms and the content would be presented in different ways with practice tests for each chapter.
Though there are some companies assisting foreign students to cope with their subjects online, the competition is less intense when it comes to serving domestic students. “The online education market in India is estimated to be around Rs 30,000 crore,” Jain said.
The portal, which uses the white board technology to enable students use text and voice chat, allows them to choose the subjects and concepts at a monthly fee ranging from Rs 300 to Rs 700 depending on the module and the class. It offers board help, packages, question bank, creative centre, mind maps and smart learning modules.
“We have plans to foray in the US and UK markets in a few months,” the director said. It has about 50 subject matter experts and would increase the number to 200 soon. There would also be a platform for the students, parents and teachers to participate in various modules on the portal.
Considering the craze for engineering and medicine courses, Extramarks.com is also looking to launch special modules for students preparing for IIT entrance and per-medical tests. For instance, about 150,000 students appear for engineering entrance and another 80,000 take the medical entrance test in Andhra. Among others, the company is looking to provide digitalised content to schools for computer-aided learning, Jain said.