Education plays a huge role in our lives. Among the many roles that the education system fulfills, the most important is that of sorting mechanism – sorting schools for colleges and sorting colleges for the labor market. The cornerstone of this sorting is the ranks. And in the UK, grades are never more important than at A level.The cancellation of the 2021 A level exams, after a year of forced distance learning, and the subsequent decision that a form of teacher assessment will be used to grade students reopened a debate on fairness. Scoring without exams is based on subjective predictions by teachers. The system trusts the teacher to rely on a range of evidence when scoring the student, and although there must be a strong appeal mechanism, it has raised concerns among students and the universities.
One result that experts have warned against is that bloated grades could leave many admissions departments in high demand, especially for lab courses with limited capabilities, like medicine and engineering. Conversely, universities at the lower end of the academic spectrum will have to admit students who would not otherwise have achieved high enough marks to enter university.
Outdated educational model
With more students than the system can support, learners can expect increased pressure to perform and adapt to independent learning. Universities will also find an extensive infrastructure to deliver the experience and meet the needs of learners. But even before the pandemic hit, the existing education system, which emphasizes memorization and standardization, was showing its age. For a generation that spends a lot of time 10.6 hours per day online content consumption, hour-long rote learning sessions, one-way communication – age on stage, rigid schedules, passive listening and generalized curricula won’t do the trick. ‘case.
With more students than the system can handle, learners can expect increased pressure to perform and adapt to independent learning.
Gen Z students expect hyper-personal, imaginative, empathetic, and on-demand learning experiences that are frictionless. As digital natives, these students are at the forefront of creating an entirely new economic structure based on their preference for experiences and social collaboration. Our education system was already calling for an overhaul to make it relevant in the digital age. This need has been accelerated by the events of the past year. Certainly, educational institutions have already adopted digital aids. With computer labs, projectors, desktops, hybrid infrastructures, and limited online libraries, schools assumed they were digitizing education.
In today’s cloud-native era, education has evolved into enhanced immersive experiences, digital social learning, and collaborative environments
In today’s cloud-native era, education has evolved into enhanced immersive experiences, digital social learning, and collaborative environments. Education here is delivered through modular online platforms accessible on mobile devices and laptops, agile models, online training and discussion, and human-machine interactions like biofeedback. In addition, learners find that they need opportunities to practice their learning, in addition to finding creative spaces and tools to express themselves. Technology has promised a lot, but any robust learning platform for schools and colleges must incorporate these four fundamental elements: convenience of access, relevance of content, engaging modes, and analytical feedback.
Digital natives need digital learning
For an always active generation, the educational tools and platforms that are part of their habits make perfect sense. Educational platform designers can learn from the retail industry how omnichannel customer journey maps are constructed. Used to these experiences, learners expect lessons to be always accessible – online or offline, over 4G or 5G connectivity bandwidths, anytime, anywhere. They should be able to start learning on their tablets, pick up where they left off on their mobile devices, and finish on their laptops – seamlessly.
Content is at the heart of all learning. Relevant, domain-specific, and digitally rich content, be it instructional videos, infographics, or even two- and three-dimensional simulations, can bring difficult-to-understand concepts to life and complement the written content. With virtual reality-based simulations, subjects such as anatomy or topography which are abstract and rich in images can be easily imagined and understood. Teachers can introduce near-authentic experiences into their pedagogy for better engagement and recall from open sources. Students enjoy learning and understanding concepts using visual aids and experiences that strengthen their thinking and imaginations, rather than sitting in class.
Learning systems must evolve towards engaging and stimulating students on an individual and group level. They should support different types of learning – from instructor-led training to self-paced online learning, and different types of learners – visual, auditory and kinesthetic, social and informal learning, and a mix of all of this. Engagement through personalized learning recommendations greatly helps students on their learning journey. Additionally, social learning in the form of discussion forums, group quizzes, and blogs, as well as informal learning from forums or even social media platforms fuel the learning preferences of this generation.
Learning platforms must have AI / ML-based analytics and telemetry to monitor learning progress and applications to predict student engagement, learning effectiveness and probable success rate with a commitment index. Such tools make it possible to intervene for disengagement, assess areas of disengagement – whether they dislike faculty methods or learn with a non-preferred learning style. These platforms should be customized to provide the optimal learning experience for each student – from preferred learning styles, to unstructured and non-linear approaches, to best learning times and windows and study patterns. , all of which help personalize content and learning materials. , which leads to academic success.
With technology-enhanced educational strategies such as blended learning, algorithmic reverse learning, personalized AI-based learning, and anytime, anywhere cloud access, digital learning can empower students by creating an atmosphere of curiosity. Platforms can improve faculty efficiency, boost peer collaboration, enable personalization, and track progress. Finally, digital learning platforms can ensure that we move away from a single, high-stakes exam that will determine a student’s future and adopt a method of continuous scoring and formative assessments. This will allow the educational institution to better track progress and map past performance with future opportunities.
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