The traditional education system has its benefits. The power of students coming together in one space, learning and growing together is unparalleled. However, it has its limitations.
In recent years, with the growth of technology, EdTech has been an excellent add-on to these solid, physical educational platforms. It has helped build a fundamental shift in the way the Indian education system has been functioning and has unlocked new avenues for everyone involved, including students, teachers and service providers. Even as the virtual mode is more accessible, there is absolutely no denial in the fact that physical institutions have and will continue to remain to be a core part of education and the industry cannot function without that.
Importance of Physical School
Humans are social animals and need physical interaction to ensure overall development. Meeting new people helps be more productive, and creative and enhances relationships in all areas. Physical schools thus are an essential foundation for children to imbibe different skill sets, cognitive abilities and build behavioural patterns.
The interpersonal connection with other students, teachers and staff members, school activities, competitions etc has an immense impact on the child’s overall development. Moreover, apart from textbook education, traditional schools also include physical education and encourage students to participate in a variety of sports and physical activities.
These cumulatively add to the holistic growth of a child right from early education to the teenage years. It helps students enhance their communication skills, build leadership qualities and more. Hence, EdTech can add as a great resource to this but can never completely replace offline schools and the environment they provide.
Solutions over replacement
In many ways, EdTech offers an add-on value/solution to traditional schools rather than being an alternative/replacement for the same. The resources and accessibility of virtual education enable students and teachers to better understand and present a topic. Schools at large can incorporate these resources in daily classes and facilitate education to be more productive with high-quality output.
Additionally, EdTech provides resources for analytics and student monitoring that traditional institutions lack. With the co-dependence of these two distinct formats on each other, the education industry will be able to collectively grow and extend the much-needed value for a global learning experience.
Breaking Geographical Boundaries
One of the most crucial aspects of virtual education is the ability to break geographical boundaries. The impeccable virtual structure acts as an aid for students living in remote areas where they lack essential educational resources. Moreover, while traditional institutions are an expensive option, EdTech provides an affordable solution to acquiring new knowledge and skills. Students can either opt for complete virtual learning or choose to learn only the aspects that traditionally do not cover, at a much less cost and
Not just for students, EdTech has paved the way to improve the quality of teachers as well and has grown to become a great resource for teacher training and development. Through its comprehensive lessons, access to expert industry leaders and customised formats, EdTech is empowering teachers to improve the quality of education imparted in both physical and virtual formats, irrespective of their locations.
Facilitating Quality Education
Overall, the answer to whether EdTech and traditional institutions can co-exist is a definite yes! Infact, a perfect balance between offline education and online education is the right way to shape contemporary education and provide students with a holistic learning experience. This includes extending a customised learning journey as also highlighted in the NEP. As both traditional and virtual sectors of education join hands to help complete the education ecosystem in India, we will be able to see how wonderfully kids develop and incorporate a systematic thinking process.
It is through this futuristic education that students will be able to boost their imagination, foster their intellectual, emotional and cognitive thinking abilities and further develop a sense of confidence in their daily lives.
(The author is Ms. Ritika Amit Kumar , CEO & Co- Founder of STEM Metaverse and the views expressed in this article are her own)