School's in

Vaughan O’Grady talks to Amazon and Lenovo about the future for education following the recent, massive uptake of digital home-learning tools.

A glance at recent headlines shows what could be seen as a frantic dash by governments and technology companies to deliver remote learning in emerging markets.

Of course, this isn’t a new need: the more remote parts of the world have long been difficult to reach, due to often overwhelmingly rural school locations.

For example, there is iMlango, an educational programme in Kenya, which uses high-speed satellite broadband to connect schools in the countryside. In Nigeria, meanwhile, education technology (edtech) start-up ScholarX Technologies is working with operator Airtel Nigeria to extend the reach of LearnAM, a new mobile learning platform.

However – following wholly new ways of ‘virtual’ learning occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic – it is clear that telecommunications and IT can make a real, previously unexpected, difference in even the most urbanised settings.

In this article, we are going to examine some of these new ways of learning, as well as the platforms which enable them. This includes looking at ‘online classrooms’, but also touching on concepts such as the increasingly popular ‘gamification’ of education, as well as aspects of the virtual assessment process.

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