India’s ed-tech market set to take a leap

We live in an age where the old pedagogical method of teaching is giving way to more interactive methods of imparting education through a cross linkage between technology and education. The impact of this commingling is momentous. For an instance, this new infusion has reduced the weight of backpacks of children considerably on one hand, while ensuring more lively and interacting environment for teaching on the other with a decreased reliance on paperback versions of the tomes. In fact, the educational landscape of nations across the globe is being dictated by the crossover.

India, thought lagging behind considerably in this new area is slowly and steadily gearing up to take the mantle. Thus, what must be considered as a positive trajectory for education in India, the nation’s technical education i.e. online supplemental education opportunities are expected to reach $2.5 billion by the end of the year, according to a recent report by Redseer consulting.

As an addendum to this propitious news, the same consulting firm further predicted that the same sector is expected to grow at the rate of 15 percent over the next three years, the firm had reported on 19th September, 2016.

According to the Associate Consultant of Redseer firm Mukesh Kumar, “The major drivers for the growth of Indian online supplemental education will be engaging course material, inventive pedagogy and reaching out to the distant locations of the country which have minimal supplemental education infrastructure.”

It has been predicted by the report that around 20 million students in a range of class 6 to 12 are poised and willing to go online for accessing supplemental education.

These statistics become especially pertinent from the fact that most of these students belong to tier-II and tier-III cities and are paying for standard offline tuitions. These students form an important source of commerce for online supplemental education in India, as reported by the consulting firm.

However, the report, though being on a positive note, also highlights other conundrums. Issues as poignant as lack of internet penetration in tier II and tier III cities to other more trivial ones such as reluctance to pay for online education on account of lack of awareness about the new fangled technologies, which implicitly are responsible for such prejudice.

This prejudice dictates the unwillingness of parents to pay for online form of supplemental education, an impediment which must be addressed proactively by government and reformers alike.

The report has also suggested the means to combat these vexations which include steps such as combining free trial periods and paid/premium versions in an innovative way, optimizing the services for low internet speeds, aggressive local marketing events as well as tie up with government schools to tap the potential.

These measures, if implemented, would go a long way in tackling such trust deficit and incorporating technology with education in India.

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