What does the future hold for the merging of EdTech and traditional Indian education in universities?

The pandemic acted as a catalyst for boosting the growth of Edtech when face-to-face learning systems were disrupted. The NEP-2020 also sparked significant changes in our nation's educational system by giving EdTech a market niche, allowing for learning curve flexibility, and emphasising blended learning. The assimilation of technology with education turned out to be the best course in the lockdown era. However, as we have successfully entered the post-pandemic period, the universities are now reopened, and the exams are now conducted offline.

Regardless of the current situation, where physical classes have become the norm again, the significance of digital education has only surged. As students are now familiar with online education, traditional educational institutes are considering a blended approach with EdTech companies.

Fusion of traditional and novel: decoding the future of education
Thanks to digitalization and technological advancements, education is not limited to classrooms. The rapid growth of smart devices and the penetration of the internet duly catered to the remote learning needs of students. However, focusing on purely offline or online education limits the addressable market for Edtechs as well as educational institutions. Moreover, EdTechs don’t have a physical infrastructure. Therefore, several EdTech players are also making efforts to follow a hybrid approach in order to build a long-term sustainable model. The concept is anticipated to provide a myriad of benefits for both Edtechs and traditional educational institutions and is deemed to change the landscape of the educational sector.

The rapid growth of smart devices and the penetration of the internet duly catered to the remote learning needs of students.

Breaking geographical boundaries
The ability to transcend geographic boundaries is one of the most important aspects of integrating virtual education with traditional institutions. Students who live in remote areas without access to necessary educational resources benefit from the excellent virtual infrastructure. With a hybrid approach, learning is continuous, and universities can provide uninterrupted education 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Universities can utilise the EdTech framework and cater to a wider audience while offering both accessibility and availability across tier II, tier III, and tier IV cities. The partnership will therefore result in universities catering to a larger audience.

One-stop shop to learn, upskill, and reskill
When Edtechs merge with universities, the students don’t have to search for different institutes in order to fulfil their skilling needs. Apart from the core curriculum provided by the universities, students need to learn other skills that will help set up their careers. Hence, instead of going and searching for an option in the market, which is tedious, universities can deliver this service. Several EdTech companies have a myriad of upskilling courses, right from soft skills to technical that can help students fulfil their learning needs. Furthermore, the universities will be able to provide personalised education and self-paced learning, which will add flexibility to the traditional learning methodology.

"EdTech companies have a myriad of upskilling courses, right from soft skills to technical that can help students fulfil their learning needs."

Way forward
It is undeniable fact the merging of Edtech and traditional educational institutions will become a part of a comprehensive educational approach in the current era of digitization. This will turn out to be the best way to shape modern education and give students a holistic learning experience. The merger will introduce a two-way learning experience that will enable students to become future-ready by honing their digital skills and setting up the proper social and emotional development systems. On other hand, it will help universities to reach a wider audience in the remotest places of the country.

The mutual reliance of these two different formats on one another will increase the overall value of a global learning experience, which is desperately needed. These offline universities will be able to also support and reinforce the online educational components, help develop brand loyalty among the target market, and help meet the expanding demand for interpersonal mentoring. Hence the future of the upcoming mergers appears to be bright from both educational and financial aspect.

Mr. Aman Mittal is the Vice President at Lovely Professional University (LPU), one of the leading educational institutes recognized globally for its innovative, collaborative, and consistent transformative approach. He is a multi-faceted personality spearheading various verticals such as International Education, Information Technology, Growth, Marketing, Public Relations, and Entrepreneurship along with overlooking the overall affairs at the university. He is renowned in the industry for his rich expertise in the education sector and managerial skills. Adding to it, he also possesses significant experience in the domains of Marketing Management, Advertising, Business Development, Strategic Planning, as well as International Business.