Dr. Pushpita Chattopadhyay, Director – Academics & Special Projects, Birla Open Minds
New challenges require novel approaches to the process of learning-teaching. Learning happens when the learner is involved, not distracted and technology has the power to engage. Technology has transformed the creation of educational content for children. Exposing children to digital environment paves an educational path by enhancing their verbal, visual and perceptual performance and also their adaptability with regard to information processing.
Educational technology in the post-COVID era differs from the past in keyways. The old model of Ed Tech focused on online curriculum which narrowly fixated on academic subject matter which was entirely instructor dependent using easily replicable curriculum using ‘1: many’ model of lectures. The new and evolved model on the other hand has online curriculum which is based on analytics; is personalised and has a progress tracking system using AI based feedback. The curriculum is based on cultural collaborations, which amalgamate YouTube, social media and gaming models such as Minecraft, Frozen and such; thus, focusing on continuous engagement.
Edtech platforms such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets have lent great flexibility to consume content on the go, thereby saving time and giving students an option of ‘where’ and ‘how’ they want to study. This has enabled students to experience holistic school learning along with competitive exam practice in an efficient manner. Various Edtech platforms have an array of material available on them that can help students better prepare for competitive exams. Specially designed lectures and course curriculums, solved and unsolved papers, preparatory material specifically targeted at certain exams, sample questionnaires and much more is now available for the student’s perusal at the click of a button.
Moreover, Artificial Intelligence has made the learning process more productive and engaging. With tools such as AI, ML and IoT that better the learning experience for students by tracking student performance, identifying problem areas and testing students in relation to competitive exams. This has enabled self-study thus freeing the students from depending on external help.
We at Birla have always believed that the secret of getting ahead is getting started. We have come up with a strong support system through our ‘Birla Brainiacs’ app. Right from creating a flexible schedule, personalised attention, curated content and adapting teaching methods best suited to students, we have amalgamated the best of the Edtech world. Designed through Preschool to Grade 10, the Birla Brainiacs app aims to provide a balance between the school and guided self-study by offering a teaching–learning environment where students take control over ‘what’ to learn and ‘how’ to learn.
Our hyper – personalized content is led by learning analytics. Activities and quizzes and unit tests that help give continuous feedback to students, teachers and parents. The detailed analysis helps in providing required intervention when needed thus resulting in frustration free student progress. Assessments are conducted once a month to gauge the progress and gaps in learning and the instruction is tweaked likewise. There are tools to automatically assess the level of the test-taker. These tests are not only for assessments but also include practice questions or test preparation materials that are useful in helping students get ready for any kind of examination.
EdTech is certainly the key to solving wider prospects thus refining the economy, yet too little has been done so far. Investors, entrepreneurs and consumers are starting to identify this and will certainly lead to major developments in remote learning very soon.