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Leveraging technology to provide high-quality coaching online

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Anuj Tiwari, CEO, Aakash Digital

The vision of Aakash Digital is to scale the number using our program to a million paid users. It also envisions leveraging technology to drive higher student engagement and measurable student outcome, which has already started with the successful result of 2700+ students in NEET and JEE Main, says Anuj Tiwari, CEO, Aakash Digital, in conversation with Elets News Network (ENN).

What is the idea behind starting Aakash Digital?

The idea was conceived when some distant schools expressed the need for high-quality content. Since there was a shortage of good faculty at these schools, we realised the need for quality coaching in regions where these schools were located. Such coaching could prepare students for competitive entrance exams. We brainstormed how to take our 30 years of academic excellence and our expertise in preparing students for competitive exams to a larger audience beyond the traditional classroom and came up with the idea of online courses through live online classes and recorded video lectures.

What makes Aakash Digital different from other E-Learning platforms?

Aakash Digital combines the best of digital and traditional teaching to ensure students grasp concepts under the guidance of experienced teachers. With the online courses offered by Aakash Digital, students can now get the 30+ years of Aakash’s academic legacy and discipline at their home. It provides programs for individual students as well as for schools that want to provide quality education to students preparing for entrance exams like NEET, JEE, AIIMS etc. with the right combination of live online classes, recorded video lectures, online tests, printed books and e-Books. Along with this, we also offer a smooth and effective learning experience by adding new features regularly like online PTMs to help parents stay updated with the progress of their child.

Unlike other e-learning platforms, we believe in bringing the parents, students and faculty together for the best student outcome.

Recently we have seen the advent of many Ed-Tech platforms in India, how has it impacted the education sector?

These new and advanced ed-tech platforms have made education accessible to all beyond geographical and economical constraints.

How Ed-Tech platforms are empowering students; especially the ones coming from tier- 2, and tier-3 cities?

In India, students in tier 2-3 cities are mostly underserved because of the unavailability of basic educational resources, poor or no physical infrastructure, and the absence of committed teachers and reading materials. Ed-tech can help change this grim picture by being akin to a ray of hope for students living in such cities. Ed-tech platforms like Aakash Digital are helping students get high-quality coaching from experienced teachers at the convenience of their home. Students now have access to well-researched content and guidance of teachers at their home.

What is the brand vision of Aakash Digital?

The vision of Aakash Digital is to scale the number using our program to a million paid users. It also envisions leveraging technology to drive higher student engagement and measurable student outcome, which has already started with the successful result of 2700+ students in NEET and JEE Main. Using Aakash Live, which provides live online classes, we want to accelerate growth as the same model has already received wide acceptance in countries like China, Korea, etc.

How do you see this era of ‘Edupreneurs’?

A rapidly growing economy like India requires an abundant supply of accountable and quality educators. Past trends among numerous independent schools indicate the need for a consolidated network of schools that deliver a high standard of education under a unified framework. The current education market is filled with innovative ideas and well-defined goals and actions that match the expectations of the public. At the same time, Education- based startups – led by tech-savvy edupreneurs, have been at the forefront of this movement, and their contributions have helped shape the way young people are taught in the digital age.

Where the Indian education industry does stand vis-a-vis the world?

India holds an important place in the global education industry. Data reveals that the number of colleges and universities in India grew to 39,050 and 903, respectively in 2017- 18. India had 36.64 million students enrolled in higher education in 2017-18. Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education reached 25.8 per cent in 2017-18. The country has become the second-largest market for e-learning after the US.

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