Transform the Future Education Environment by Leveraging Data, a “DNA for  Education”

Written by KidsLoop CTO Robert Hardman

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the traditional concept of education is now required to undergo overwhelming change. The role of public education has transitioned to online education and students have no choice but to increase self-directed learning time. During this situation, artificial intelligence-based education platforms are drawing more attention than ever as a solution to recover learning deficits and bridge gaps. Student learning data has become the most important resource of all, as it provides customized learning based on the student’s level, learning methods, and environment since not all students learn at the same pace. The demand for EdTech and in particular nextgen EdTech platforms has increased significantly with the activation of online education, hence the amount of learning data accumulated on these platforms is also increasing at a faster rate than ever before. 

We are at a moment in a time where there is a unique confluence of need, demand and technology; home and remote learning meets real-time technologies, intensive algorithmic processing, and big data for the first time. It is this meeting that empowers and directs the innovation of next-generation EdTech, the creation of a truly responsive and personalised learning platform. 

How can Korean EdTech companies use the accumulated data more safely to innovate the upcoming future educational environment?  

Broadly speaking, it can be viewed in three ways,  

Firstly, digital content by itself is not sufficient. We must move from a “content platform” to what can be  described as an “information-rich ecosystem.” A holistic learning platform that creates a rich learning ecosystem through innovative digital content married with deep analytic and algorithmic capabilities sets up the future for EdTech. 

The platform will help EdTech companies provide a responsive personalized learning environment built upon the learning experiences and content that students around the world learn from. It is possible to collect, store and analyse data with the all-in-one platform where content is digitized, intelligently accessed and can be curated via interactive real-time video classes. In other words, EdTech companies must be able to provide the data and analysis which teachers, parents, and students need to both access, measure and direct progress. The platform should be able to be responsive to a student’s needs and thus create and deliver personalized learning plans for students. Furthermore, Korean EdTech companies should aim to build and deliver a rich information learning ecosystem through the concept of PSIE(Physical, Social, Intellectual, Emotional) to enrich, stimulate, and enhance a child’s overall well-being and mental health. This will revolutionize the primary-elementary education market in time. 

Secondly, it is necessary to analyse extensive data to reveal the patterns and signals hidden deep within the data; advanced mathematical methods, deep learning algorithms combined with AI techniques to uncover and reveal these signals. With these abilities, EdTech companies will be able to secure leadership and competitiveness in the global market and innovate the online education market.  Advances in AI, big data, and algorithm technologies have enabled EdTech companies to collect and track large amounts of data. One point to consider here is that it is not the final goal of EdTech companies to automate learning via their education platforms with the development of the above technologies. They should reimagine and redefine the concept of “future education” through the development and use of AI, big data, and algorithmic technologies to establish a learning-responsive educational ecosystem where children can feel the joy of learning.  

Korean EdTech companies use their excellence and leadership in advanced technologies to create and to build education platforms that can deliver the “continuous comparative assessment” of every child and hence discover any problems related to children’s learning abilities early on and take any remedial actions in time thus minimising the future impact. Also, to ensure that data assets realise their maximum value, EdTech companies need to apply the best data science techniques. The techniques of deep learning and big data analysis Machine Learning, AI methods to name just a few, provides the basis for a truly evidence-based approach to early learning far superior to those methods commonly found in existing EdTech platforms. For fully responsive, personalized education, EdTech companies need to leverage the technological advances in data science and big data.  

Finally, it is critical that the learning space created by the EdTech companies is secure and safe; a child’s data is completely private and should only be accessible by those suitably authorised. In the  United States, EdTech companies have established a security system called the “Student Privacy Pledge,” which aims to use data for educational purposes only. Korea also needs to discuss the range of data provision, such as to whom the accumulated student data will be provided. Learning data obtained at the time when children’s brains grow rapidly (3-8 years old) is a very important dataset.  Korean EdTech companies should build their platforms with security in mind, that is security by design.  Also, they need to comply with international privacy laws (GDPR). As such, Korean EdTech companies should not compete with existing platforms, but make efforts to make their data and security systems world-class. These data sets are the genome of learning and are the enabler for Continuous  Comparative Assessment of a child’s learning. 

We are facing a major shift in the educational paradigm due to COVID-19. While the situation that seemed likely to end soon has not calmed down but is getting stronger, concerns about the education of future generations, such as poor basic education and educational gaps among students, are emerging.  In line with this, various EdTech companies are working hard to quickly collect data and to provide adaptive education platforms. Furthermore, by securing experienced mathematicians and scientists, EdTech companies are effectively collecting and utilizing data from interactions in children’s behaviours and problem-solving processes to create an adaptive educational ecosystem that satisfies the universe each child has.