Chief Executive Officer,
Woxsen Group & Ormeal Foods Pvt. Ltd.
The current COVID-19 pandemic has pushed us into unchartered waters & forced us to look at things with a completely new lens. In the field of education, over 100 crore students worldwide are not able to attend their schools and universities, as a measure to stop this contagion. In India also, it has forced the central and state authorities to shut down all the educational institutions resulting in the disruption of studies.
Our conventional education system has always made us believe that superior learning is a function of studying at the campus where the student gets personal attention from the faculty, cross learning from the peer group, develop social skills, group work and assignments to foster student growth & ability. Even a short period of missing physical classes is perceived to negatively impact multidisciplinary learning, connect across different fields, skills and ideation.
Research has clearly proven in the past that home-learning affects the student’s productivity, social life, and their learning outcome. In my opinion, online teaching will never be able to completely replace the brick and mortar based learning environment because of so many inherent merits. Online teaching is a relatively newer phenomenon for a country like India, and can lead to serious setbacks later in the decade.
Despite all of this, Higher education space is an exciting place to be right now. The current situation has infact set the stage for growth and disrupt the education landscape. Post COVID-19, I think we are poised to witness 5 key trends in the Higher education space illustrated as below:
- Embrace Digital Transformation:Technology will be all pervasive & shall stay at core of any new disruption in every aspect of higher learning and education. All forward looking institutions will take a bold step into the future & create their 360 degree digital integration plan since there are only 2 options available – Pivot Or Perish!
- Rise of Blended Curriculums:Digital platforms & online delivery will become an integral part of the future curriculums giving rise to blended Programs where core delivery will be in the form of self-paced online modules, virtual delivery & classroom delivery.Further, the inclusion of e-Learning would only create more curious and inquiring youngsters and embrace technology for their learning needs.
- Unprecedented growth in Short-Term Certification Courses:This COVID-19 led global recession & liquidity crunch in the economy will lead to spike in the unemployment rate. It is expected that this time will be duly used by people to upskill themselves on various functional & behavioural skills, hence signing up for Short-term Certification Courses. Even Nielsen’s latest report declared that 47% consumers will consider spending more on education.
- Launch of New Programs in emerging technologies & digital space:Technology disruption will be all pervasive & hence will impact most industries across the globe. We expect the demand to pick up for programs in emerging technologies & digital space like Data Sciences, Artificial Intelligence, Deep Learning, IOT etc.
- Study Abroad Category to shrink: Student & parent preference is expected to shift from pursuing higher education abroad to staying within India. However, only Top tier Institutions which offer cutting edge programs with immaculate delivery will stand to benefit from this trend.
It is said that a crisis is usually the best time to reform and reflect upon ourselves. We can utilize this lockdown as an excuse to broaden our skill set, pivot our goals & priorities and spend quality time with our families, focus on our hobbies, and a lot more!
No doubt, this pandemic has unleashed the biggest catastrophe that humanity has faced so far. We all have to make sure that we take all measures to lessen this disruption so that when life returns to normal, we all are even more prepared to turn this crisis to our advantage!