The pandemic forced the global education system to shift their priorities towards technology and implement remote learning. For a sector that is slow to adapt change, this was quite remarkable. As a result, we saw a surge in edtech platforms, and it is unlikely this will reverse in the future.
This market shift saw different businesses succeed, and it is likely there will be competition and consolidation within the market. If you are investor, there are two key things to look out for in edtech right now: Learning Management Systems (LMS) and Learning Experience Platforms (LXPs).
LMSs are prevalent in admin and compliance-driven segments. They maintain their market share in employee training programs, such as internal policies, compliance, or the onboarding of new employees. The features of LMSs are pretty basic, they under-invested in their front-end, with their primary functions as managing learning programs, selecting/assigning content, and using data to assess learners’ progress.
A key industry that will drive LMS edtech growth will be HR. Businesses will continue to prioritise staff engagement and retention, and investing in their employees’ learning & development will be essential. Businesses will be looking to integrate HR information System and e-learning to create a personalised, learning platform for employees. This has historically been done in the past for large enterprises, but we are seeing the emergence of these platforms in SME’s. An example is CIPHR. CIPHR created a joined-up proposition for SMEs by allowing employees a better user experience by making sure their learning is integrated with the HR profile, for example for review rounds.
LXPs have more developed front-end interfaces and the systems’ back ends generate content recommendations based on the user’s goals, experiences, preferences, and history. These are more personalised-something similar to Netflix as a comparison-and most LXPs have been built on top of an existing LMS. An example is the education software provider The Access Group which recently released a video streaming platform called Education Demand throughout schools in the UK – a platform it described as ‘Netflix’-like. This platform offers modules to a variety of GSCE subjects, which are delivered using a mixture of video, assessment, and workbook-based tasks.
A long-term view of edtech will be implementing virtual reality (VR). The World Economic Forum released an article last month as a part of it’s annual meeting that said VR will be the future of education, and identified 10 key benefits.
From the article, research has shown that VR positively influences students’ learning outcomes. The technology can be used to create a unique experience adapted to each student’s ability, style, pace and drive to learn, creating a personalised, student-focused platform. Teachers are able to motivate students and create a collaborative and interactive studying environment.
Although students are now back in classrooms, there is no reason to stop using technology in their learning. Interactive platforms can help students and teachers both supplement what is being taught in classrooms-a model that was proven to be successful during the pandemic.
At Polestar, we have experience working with many different companies within the education and edtech space – if you have any questions about the market or your own business, please do get in touch!
The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the edtech market, with schools, further education institutions and corporates switching to remote learning, in some cases quite literally overnight