By forging new strategic partnerships with technology providers, the education sector can attract significant investment opportunities.
“The great aim of education is not knowledge, but action,” Herbert Spencer once said. Though he made this comment more than 100 years ago, the sentiment can be easily applied to GCC students and educators managing the unintended shift to remote learning.
In the field of education, the rapid adoption of digital technology to keep students connected to their teachers and the classroom has been recognized as a seismic shift that should be recognized. It is clear that the transition towards more ‘blended’ learning programs is causing permanent changes to both teaching methods and business models throughout the GCC, where student enrolments crossed 12.2 million in 2019.
Going forward, the EdTech influx must not be used solely to fill gaps that the traditional model cannot. A well-designed technology investment program can help education providers enhance their offerings while reshaping their business models to drive growth, improve adaptability and scalability, and prepare for future system shocks.
Managing this transition to a mixed system will enable teachers and students to teach and learn in new and creative ways that meet the needs of a positive society, rather than suffering from ongoing change.
Negotiate the Change
As the GCC education industry continues to grow, we anticipate an increase in collaboration to improve operational efficiency and educational outcomes. But while the desire to integrate EdTech is great, there are many challenges that stakeholders must overcome.
Technology is a rapidly evolving field, with both hardware and software quickly becoming obsolete with new models. As the field continues to evolve and learning platforms evolve, exciting technologies such as AI combined with the machine and adaptive learning will be needed to make curriculum teaching a seamless process. Products that are easy to integrate with current systems/software and easy to interpret are likely to be more effective and successful.
Through consistent, considered investment, a strong technology infrastructure can be built. In-person and remote education with more flexibility is likely to attract greater investments. In order to attract significant investment opportunities, the education sector needs to embrace new strategic partnerships with technology providers. As governments continue to open up the sector to foreign ownership and PPP models, exciting times are ahead for the sector in terms of its ability to lead this historic change and be at the forefront of global best practices.
This process is also being accelerated by his GCC-wide desire to prepare citizens and residents for the coming wave of “Fourth Industrial Revolution” technology. As the adoption of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and robotics increases, there will be a need for education focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics [STEM].
Again, partnerships are key to the effective development of new learning models and securing growth opportunities for the sector. For example, future jobs depend on a solid understanding of mathematics. So the online math tutoring space is now a $30 billion global market. Cuemath, an online math learning platform, has grown to become one of the top 30 education companies in the world and will become an official partner of Google for Education in 2021. This is just one example of the endless growth opportunities surrounding EdTech and opportunities to expand and enhance educational services for students.