Educational Technology (EdTech) has been defined as "the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources." While using technology to aid with learning has been around for as long as we can all remember, relatively recent technological advancements including smartphones and tablets have facilitated the prominence of educational technology in the past decade or so. These include training online with webinars, learning apps, data analytics and business and finance management. It is only a relatively recent development which allows us to complete whole degrees online.
In spite of this EdTech investment has slipped under the radar in the UK, in particular when compared to sectors such as Fintech, which have had a lot of coverage.
Estimated to be worth over £6 trillion, but with less than 3% digital penetration to date, the global education market is one of the few ultra-large industries yet to undergo a serious technological transformation. This remarkable opportunity has attracted serial entrepreneurs, world-class investors and ground-breaking approaches to how learning is administered, accredited and consumed. Macro trends such as the automation of white-collar work, increasingly competitive entry-level recruitment, and the rapid growth of student numbers worldwide (~1bn by 2035), have all presented further opportunities for educational technology innovation.
A clear trend is emerging with the education market opening its arms to technology, EdTech investment has soared over the past few years. Investment comes from an increasing number of sources, including non-profit organisations, venture capital, firms including Google and online investment platforms such as SyndicateRoom.
The future of learning
View highlights of our recent event, 'An Evening with Simon Calver' which took place on 19th June 2017. Simon is one of the best known and regarded entrepreneurs and investors on the British tech scene and is optimistic about the future of learning having recently leading a £4.5m investment into Firefly, an EdTech company.
Watch Simon's keynote below.
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