The global economy continues to suffer from both a shortage of skilled workers and high youth unemployment. The digital learning revolution could help solve both problems by lowering the cost of education while improving its quality. Read on to learn more and to test your knowledge about emerging trends in digital education.
Millions of students around the world now have access to formal education online. For example, students in 31 countries can now access online courses offered by Malaysia’s Asia eUniversity. Open Universities Australia, which pools courses and degree programs from over 20 universities, has granted more than 250,000 degrees to students from Australia and neighboring countries since the initiative’s founding 20 years ago. And 53% of K-12 public schools in the U.S. now offer long distance education courses for credit, up from 30% in 2002-03.
Thanks to the rise of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and other informal education services, large populations worldwide now have access to high-quality learning resources. Khan Academy now attracts more than six million monthly visitors to its free online learning platform. In South Korea, an online education company called Megastudy offers distance tutoring services that connect one master teacher with thousands of students at a time through on-demand video tuition.
The spread of mobile connectivity is creating an unprecedented platform to increase the availability of education. About 90% of the global population now has access to mobile networks. Mobile broadband subscriptions are expected to total 2.3 billion by the end of 2014, 55% of them in the developing world.
1. How many education-related apps do mobile users download worldwide in a year?
2. In what region is mobile education spending growing fastest?
Recent studies suggest that digital learning tools can help educators improve student outcomes and boost the lifetime earnings of graduates. In an Indian study, students from rural, low-income households who used a mobile game to study English saw their test scores improve by nearly 60%. At Arizona State University, a personalized learning program has improved the pass rates for students in remedial math courses from 64 percent to 75 percent, and dropout rates of these students are down by 7 percent.
1. In South Africa, 25,500 teachers are now learning mathematics via an interactive online platform called MoMath. What has happened to math proficiency scores across all users of this platform?
2. What would be the estimated economic impact of rolling out tech-enabled personalized learning programs worldwide, measured in annual increased lifetime earnings for our youth?