How can edtech help universities transition post-pandemic?

Right now, different countries are at different points in their COVID-19 infection rates. But what has been uniform is the sudden shift of education from classroom learning to an online learning experience. While there has been a distinct rise in e-learning – where learning is remote and on digital platforms – it is yet to be seen whether this trend will continue in the post-pandemic world.

Some experts believe that a new hybrid education model will emerge that will gradually establish itself as an integral component of education.

However, others believe that the rapid move to online learning without sufficient planning, preparation and training can result in poor user experience, creating an environment which is not conducive to sustainable growth.

Although there have been successful transitions, there are some challenges that could result in major setbacks to adopting an online education model in universities.

In countries where there are significant gaps between the privileged and the unprivileged, there is a massive digital divide. While some students have no reliable access to the internet, others do not have the digital equipment needed to participate in digital learning.

Nevertheless, research shows that the pandemic might have been the catalyst for the adoption of technology in the education world and that these changes are here to stay due to the benefits technology offers.

But how do education institutions adjust? I list three adjustments universities will have to make to prepare for the ‘new normal’ in education:

1. Go mobile

COVID-19 has made the idea of the distributed campus a reality. With the help of mobile apps, students can take their university with them wherever they go.

Experts are of the opinion that this trend is here to stay. Even when universities open up, the option of taking classes on mobile apps will remain.

Collpoll is one example of an edtech start-up that offers a one-stop shop for students, faculty and management. The software boasts 40+ modules that are designed to cater to different aspects of campus management, from admissions through to examinations.

This web and mobile-based AI-powered software is developed to address the rising complexity of delivering online classes and campus management in the coronavirus-affected world and beyond.

2. Create online back-up programmes

The post-pandemic world may have colleges and universities returning to full on-campus attendance, but it will need online back-up programmes to tackle unexpected emergency situations that may crop up at any time. Many universities have learned this the hard way.

Although comprehensive online programmes are already a part of many universities’ academic portfolios, those that haven’t thoroughly planned their academic repertoire online need to do so quickly to be prepared if they face a similar situation in the future.

One of the ways higher education institutions can stay prepared is by investing in software like Instructure. This edtech software allows faculty to create new courses and allot assignments to students.

3. Deliver better online course quality

The pandemic has taught us some tough lessons. It has forced universities to take a hard look at what makes a great online learning experience and has made them strive to deliver that to their students.

Taking online classes on video platforms doesn’t help deliver a great online learning experience, but automating the entire online process onto a single platform for better management and user experience can help you get there.

Torsh is one such example of a professional learning platform that aims to bring top-class education to students and improve teacher performance. It helps bridge the teacher-student gap with relevant next-generation solutions.

In short, universities need to make adjustments to stay relevant now and in the near future. Online learning is going to play a bigger part in higher education. Universities and colleges need to keep this in mind and invest in edtech that is designed and developed to help them stay afloat from this point forward.

Arnav Kakkad is a tech enthusiast and a content writer who works with Collpoll, an AI-powered online platform for digital learning and campus automation, where he develops content on technology, start-ups and education.