Latest figures show the global EdTech and smart classroom market is expected to grow from $US85.8 billion in 2020 to $US181 billion by 2025, as part of the rush towards education technology solutions prompted by COVID-19.
But while market and investment hype have been growing, the application and efficacy of the technology remains a work in progress, according to educational experts.
A report from US educational research not-for-profit, NWEA suggests that after the large scale national shift to remote learning, US students returned to school in autumn with roughly 70 percent of the learning gains in reading, compared to a typical school year.
The study indicates mathematics students were likely to fare even worse, returning with less than 50 percent of the learning gains and in some grades, nearly a full year behind what would normally be observed.
However, while there is still doubt about the virtual classroom results, the EdTech market sees long term opportunity.
Industry data highlights the growth opportunities, predicting the market will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16 percent in the years leading up to 2025.
As could be expected, the major factors driving the recent growth has been the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and growing need for online teaching-learning models to continue the education system in lockdown.
The Brookings Institution is a US nonprofit public policy organisation says while technology has disrupted most sectors of the economy, until now its impact on schools, teaching, and learning has been much more limited.
That’s changed with COVID, with governments and education departments across the world forced to embrace radical new remote learning models and education technology solutions.
The Brookings Institution believes many EdTech failings are the result of the technology being used to replace analog tools, without playing to technology’s comparative advantages.
The Institution’s report suggests more focus needs to be placed on schools using the technology to enhance the work of educators, rather than the wholesale replacement of established teaching methods.
There’s no shortage of entrepreneurial activity and investment working to solve the problems highlighted by education institutions, all eager to win market share and contracts.
Industry estimates predict the learning management system segment to hold the largest market share over the next five years – used for the supervision, certification, tracking, and offering of eLearning applications.
With educational technology solutions expected to remain a mainstay in the post-COVID world, they’re gains teachers hope they’ll be able deploy sooner rather than later.