EdTech Trends- 2022
As the EdTech industry continues to grow with unstoppable force, at Supercharger Ventures, we have been able to identify two emerging trends in the sector as our portfolio becomes more diversified.
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Education is slowly renouncing traditional teaching methods and moving towards a faster and more personalized way of learning through the use of advanced education technology.
In this blog, we will take a look at the two trends that have stood out in our startup applications and why we think these have the ability to change the face of education.
There’s no doubt that virtual reality software is becoming increasingly popular, as VR is a highly interactive and fun way of learning. With rumors spreading about Apple releasing their first AR/VR headset this year, it’s clear that it isn’t long until virtual reality becomes a part of our everyday lives. But, what does this mean for education? How big of an impact will virtual reality have on educating generations to come?
Virtual reality is making education accessible in ways that, until recently, were completely unheard of. Medical and science students will no longer need physical access to a hospital or science lab in order to train for their chosen profession, as EdTech companies are creating opportunities for immersive virtual training. One of the startups in our portfolio, ‘Axon Park’, has impressed us with their ‘Medical VR Learning Experience’ course as well as their ‘Medical Foundations Course’. These courses allow medical students to access realistic simulations of the human body. At a time where Covid 19 has devastated the NHS, immersive virtual medical training may be an essential part of the future of medicine, as more medical students are able to access vital training programmes remotely.
The second trend we’ve identified at SuperCharger is “Gamification”. As children, we are all born with an inherent urge to play. So, why not learn through playing? According to psychologists, games allow children to use their creativity whilst simultaneously developing their imagination and enhancing their knowledge. In a study conducted by the non-profit organization ‘Common Sense Media’, it was found that 80% of children had access to a tablet or smartphone in 2017. The study also concluded that two-thirds of these parents had downloaded apps specifically designed for children. These are numbers which have only increased since and will continue to do so. Lots of children have access to an iPad before they can even speak, so it’s extremely important that the content they have access to is at least somewhat educational and child-friendly.
‘Vikidz’, a startup we are lucky to work with, sets a great example of gamified learning. This innovative company creates video games which revolve around mathematics and help children improve their teamwork skills. Their slogan is ‘Learn Through Competition”, one that captures a vital element of gamified learning, competition. Competition motivates all of us, as we are presented with the incentive of winning. If the objective is solely that of learning, children will feel less inclined to participate. Yet, if they can beat their friends, suddenly motivation sky-rockets, and the fact that they are participating in an educational activity is almost forgotten.
Whilst ‘Virtual Reality’ and ‘Gamified Learning’ are some of the biggest current trends we have been able to pick up on in our startup applications, what does the future hold for the educational technology sector? In an engaging conversation I had on the future of EdTech with one of our startup founders, Danielle Lacombe-McLoughlin, founder of TechWarriors, Danielle stated that the future of EdTech will be interesting from an Artificial Intelligence (AI) perspective, as currently many children are still doing their homework with a pencil and paper. She questioned whether children would still be using a pencil in 5 years time, as, perhaps with the development of artificial intelligence, everything will be digitized.