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Covid-19 Pandemic Has Accelerated the Need for Digital Education and Online Learning
Impact of Covid-19 on learning | online learning in the wake of the pandemic | growth of digital education systems following Covid-19 | online learning concerns
Even as we continue to grapple with the devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, we cannot deny that this dark cloud came with some silver lining.
One of the areas that were both positively and negatively impacted by the pandemic is the education sector. While the pandemic has significantly eroded the traditional classroom education model, new industry titans continue to emerge thanks to e-learning platforms.
Presently, online learning not only covers elementary education but graduate-entry programs as well.
One of the most prominent online learning fora for youngsters is the Tencent classroom, a Wuhan-based online school that saw a colossal 730,000 K-12 children coming on board following the pandemic.
Other digital learning portals which experienced exponential growth include Lark, gradready.com.au, and Alibaba Cloud.
Some of the fantastic features on the Lark platform include video conferencing capabilities, a smart calendar for your scheduling needs, and auto-translation capacity. The portal also enables teachers and their students to benefit from real-time co-editing of assignments.
On the other hand, Coursera is a premium learning site for a college education that connects learners with real professors and lecturers from prestigious universities at rates lower than those demanded by universities.
It facilitates a raft of university-level courses tailored to meet current market needs in partnership with world-class universities and companies.
Another forum top learning avenue with university-level content is EdX, the brainchild of MIT and Havard. It features various bachelor's and master's programs complete with certification and transferable credits on some courses.
However, the online learning bandwagon is not just restricted to formal education either. It extends to all kinds of skills, whether the learning is for fun or income generation.
Real-life experts and successful persons in given fields now have an opportunity to share their knowledge across several channels.
Depending on one's area of interest, it is possible to acquire a new skill, hone pre-existing talents, or even learn a new hobby thanks to these skill-sharing opportunities.
For creatives, the leading teaching platform is Skillshare. Aside from practical and valuable lessons, Skillshare also offers an opportunity for creatives who wish to sell their products to exhibit their works. It is a relaxed, informal platform linking real industry experts with those who want to learn. Among the areas covered on the forum are visual arts and crafts, décor, writing, photography, etc.
Learners can also opt to be taught by celebrities through the MasterClass forum. Here, renowned industry players give talks on how beginners can navigate a particular craft or industry. The areas covered under the MasterClass platform include writing, music, and acting, among many others.
Despite the gains made by digital learning, its critics nonetheless contend that the experience robs learners of personal interaction with their instructors.
Yet another argument is that brick-and-mortar learning institutions provide a psycho-social support system challenging to replicate with online learning. In particular, young learners might suffer adverse psychological effects due to the isolated nature of the learning environment.
Despite these concerns, the effect of the pandemic around the globe continues unabated. Earlier this month, large corporations in developed economies such as South Korea ordered their employees to work remotely as the country braces for a fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
With that in mind, it is safe to say that the educational revolution is likely to continue. Perhaps the most significant benefit of all is that we now see the emergence of a new and more dynamic system capable of easy fine-tuning to conform to market needs.
This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or the management of EconoTimes