In this rapidly digitising world, technology is changing the way education is imparted. e-Learning is now replacing the traditional vistas of education. Ashutosh Kumar , CEO, Testbook.com, briefs Elets News Network (ENN) about the importance of e-learning, its existing challenges & solutions and how it can change the future of learning
What is e-learning?
e-Learning is the natural culmination of education in a rapidly digitising world. When you have an app for everything, why not for learning? e-Learning seeks to address all the shortcomings of traditional education through digital means.
One of the biggest challenges faced by students, in the course of their education from school to university, is poor teacher -student ratio. And this ratio has all but taken the personal touch out of the learning system. Guidance isn’t personal or adequate to match the varying requirements of each student.
In the traditional testing system, every student becomes another name on a paper. He is judged simply by his marks in a particular exam. A teacher cannot glance back to see his performance, over, say, the last 15 tests. However, the questions arise: How is a teacher supposed to effectively mentor the students into a good plan of action? Is it even possible to achieve extensive and sustainable student profiling through offline data collection and processing?
Personal Tutors: Personal tutors have long been the stand-in for this missing personalisation in the education system. High cost and scarcity of experienced tu – tors, however, mean that this isn’t an op – tion for everyone.
Videos: Videos can solve the problem of accessibility and high costs. But they are the biggest offenders on ‘personali – sation’ scale. Monotonous and uninterruptible, these lectures often become one-way speeches delivered in virtual classrooms.
Adaptive Testing: This was the first step in bringing personalisation in learning. But it covers only one of the four pillars of learning, i.e. practice. This technology allows students to practice one question at a time as the system gauges their proficiency. This ensures that students learn at theirown pace while maintaining interest and boosting confidence. The computer also acts as an impartial judgeing rading students among their intellectual peers.
Learning has four components study of concepts, practice, testing, and mentoring, to guide students forward. The time has come to integrate all four elements on a computer console vis-a-vis intelligent models to solve the three major problems that exist in the learning system:
- l Personalisation
- l Inaccessibility
- l High cost
There is need for an education platform that can do more than just provide adaptive practice. Bringing all the four elements of learning together can help in creating a complete, holistic and omnipotent teaching system. Real-world implementa tion is, however, faced with many technical challenges. When successful, it will lead to a computer-driven system that will be the smartest personal tutor – one who is accessible from anywhere, anytime; one who understands, analyses, grooms and teaches you at a scientifically formulated pace.
The success of this model depends on how much data the early entrants in e- learning space can collect. The EdTech companies looking to compete and innovate rapidly will soon be able to deliver such technologies to the masses at non-prohibiti ve costs. No doubt though that pioneers in the field will make for the most trustworthy names.
Knewton.com took the early lead in building an adaptive platform. The New York based compan y allows schools to provide adaptive learning for their students. The Indian e-learning space is yet to catch up. However, startups, like Testbook.com, are working hard to bring this innovation to the billion-strong country.