The education sector has seen tremendous innovation recently. From digital classrooms to online courses, the Internet has become a knowledge base accessible to anyone who wants to learn anything. Many students are already choosing online courses from universities of their choice which can help them study whenever and wherever they want to. This is a testimony to how the traditional education system is being disrupted by the digital age. Education tech is not a replacement for teachers, though. It is a way to enhance education by helping teachers teach creatively and engage with students without the load they deal with traditionally. Enterprises across the world are also providing employees with resource platforms where they can train themselves, learn new skills, and grow. Many startups have been popping up with new and interesting ways to hone the power of the Internet for educational purposes. Huge capital has been invested in such startups by strategic investors. This swiftly growing EdTech market raked in investments of $9.5 billion in 2017 and is expected to be valued at around $129 billion by 2020.
With huge investments and a potential to completely transform education, a revolution is underway. The cutthroat competition encourages startups to deliver solutions and products at a lightning fast pace that can help make a mark and win loyal customers. Education technology is all the rage today, and startups from all over the world are working toward delivering unique products. Here is the list of some of the most innovative and fastest-growing EdTech ventures out there.
Currently used by around 30 million users across the globe, Coursera is on an incredible trajectory. This SiliconValley-based startup founded in 2012 has collaborations with 140-plus colleges and it aims at transforming education. With a plethora of free and paid courses, it aims at providing its users with a unique and enhanced learning experience. More than 500 corporates have collaborated with Coursera to upskill employees in order to boost growth. Coursera has managed to raise capital of $210 million. Coursera plans on using the latest series D funding of $64 million to grow its B2B platform and provide additional master’s degree courses to its users.
Coursera recently launched the course “AWS Cloud Fundamental: Going Cloud Native” in collaboration with Amazon Web Services to help people understand the cloud better and encourage cloud migration. A new course, “AI for Everyone,” is set to launch soon to give people a nontechnical overview of AI and machine learning. With its courses and constant expansion, Coursera aims for the very top.
New York-based startup Knewton uses adaptive learning to help students who struggle with their curriculum. Knewton’s Alta helps students by eliminating knowledge gaps and provides them with courses that are tailor-made for them by keeping every individual student’s proficiencies in focus. Alta uses assignments to evaluate students and provides instructors with feedback that they can use to help students with knowledge gaps they encounter.
Knewton collaborates with more than 250 colleges across the United States and has a 15 million strong user base. Knewton has received total funding of $180 million. Knewton wants to help all its users achieve better results. Because the content is thoroughly researched and put together by experts, many instructors in the United States are now turning to Alta as its educational resource.
This French startup is the most successful EdTech venture from that country. Previously an e-learning service, it now provides students with degrees in numerous disciplines. Launched in 2007, it has become a well-established EdTech company that has garnered a total of $69 million in funding. OpenClassrooms guarantees jobs to its students and promises to pay them back their course fee if they can’t get a job. OpenClassrooms community consists of around 600 mentors who check on the students and help them with their courses.
OpenClassrooms has partnerships with several companies, including large French multinational corporation Capgemini. The partner companies hire OpenClassrooms’ students after they achieve their degrees. Students can also work with companies part-time while they complete their degrees. With a fee of €300 per month, it’s cheaper than regular college programs. Deliveroo, a food delivery company, offers courses to its employees to help them get certificates of achievements for free. With its impressive sales pitch and incredible growth, OpenClassrooms is set to become an education powerhouse.
Swiss startup founded by former Google executives, Coorpacademy is becoming a globally accepted upskilling tool. Several corporates are gravitating toward Coorpacademy in search of time-saving and cost-effective upskilling of their employees. Coorpacademy offers gamification of training that employees need to undergo and lets them compete in order to get higher scores. This subscription-based service lets users choose from around 800,000 courses in 19 languages.
Users can upload custom courses over Coorpacademy that are available to other students. The revenue generated from these courses is then split between Coorpacademy and the creator. This business model attracts experts interested in making money by sharing their content and in turn helps Coorpacademy by adding to its rapidly growing revenue. Recently, L’Oréal shared its seven selling steps course on Coorpacademy aimed for L’Oréal distributors and resellers.
5. KaDa Story
China’s KaDa Story has recently announced that it plans to go international after series A funding on $14 million. KaDa provides digital picture books to children up to age 9. They also provide custom services on digital content for kindergarten and public libraries. With an aim of providing quality content to its 10 million users, it only provides professionally generated content but plans on incorporating user-generated content in the future.
Currently, KaDa delivers content from more than 160 children’s organizations in China and around 40 such organizations worldwide, including Walt Disney and Oxford University Press. KaDa aspires to help kids in their holistic development through the content it delivers and plans on introducing a reward system to stimulate learning.
Photomath is a revolutionary Croatian app that landed in app stores four years ago and has stayed as one of the most downloaded apps ever since. This app helps students find solutions to math problems of varying complexity with the help of the camera. All a user needs to do is scan the problem through their mobile camera and with the help of text recognition it will understand the problem and provide a procedure to solve it. It can even recognize handwriting and can help relieve students of the stress they face when trying to solve a particularly complicated math exercise.
Earlier this month, Photomath received funding of $6 million. Photomath has been downloaded over 100 million times and continues attracting desperate students looking to find an easy way to learn math.
EdTech: The future is bright
Startups like these are just a taste of what’s out there. Technology continues to bring innovation to the education sectors. As EdTech ventures like these continue gaining traction from students around the world. Many colleges and universities are adopting adaptive learning, virtual reality, and augmented reality to provide a more enhanced educational experience. With the growing demand for online assistance, these apps are helping democratize education by providing access to teacher-endorsed study materials, assignments, and test prep available everywhere at low prices. It’s going to be interesting to witness this transformation in a sector that has remained unchanged in the last century. And, with all these startups doing their best to woo customers and expanding through never-ending innovation, the future of EdTech seems promising and bright.
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