Digital learning has been around across the world since before the pandemic. While the pandemic has accelerated the adaptation of digital learning in Malaysia, it was a difficult process that students and educators had to go through due to lack of preparation for the transition which had to take place in an instant.
Many schools leveraged video and online conferencing tools to conduct classes as these were easily available and complementary — because many did not have the budget to adopt full-scale edtech solutions.
Edtech Market Worth
RM 1.6 trillion
5.2% of the global education market
What is Edtech?
Edtech, or edutech, is a portmanteau of education and technology and refers to hardware and software designed to enhance teacher-led learning and improve the learning outcome for students.2 It involves a range of tools, from massive open online courses (MOOC) to classroom management software that facilitates virtual classrooms and interactive apps that connect tutors and students.
Education intelligence resource HolonIQ estimates that the field of edtech will be worth US$404 billion (RM1.6 trillion) by 2025, representing just 5.2% of the anticipated US$7.3 trillion global education market.2 Locally, the industry is also budding with over 100 edtech-related start-ups as at September 2019.2 In Malaysia, institutions of higher learning have been more advanced in using edtech. This is mainly because universities are more financially able to fund the technology that facilitates teaching and effective management of quality education for large student numbers in the long run.
Benefits of Edtech
1. Prepares Students for the future
• Edtech prepared students for a future driven by technology
• While still retaining the collaboration and social learning that are key in holistic development.
2. Eases administrative tasks
• Reduces the burden of administrative tasks for teachers, helping them to become more versatile in their pedadogy.
3. Intelligent learning systems
• Edtech does more than just replicating traditional classes.
• Intelligent digital learning systems can analyse how students study.⁴
• So schools can develop personalised learning experiences for better performance
Challenges That Students and Tutors Face with Edtech
There were many activities that teachers could do during physical classroom to help retain students’ attention, but online learning offered a different set of challenge.3 Hence, teachers chose short and concise materials and straightforward approach to conduct their lessons, but it was a challenge to ensure the information was enough.
While technology is meant to bring people closer together and lives easier, not every student in the country was fortunate enough to have access to edtech or online learning during the pandemic, due to lack of tech devices and Internet connection.