Universities have always worked to lead the education sector. To do this, it is essential to be at the forefront of new technologies that facilitate teaching and make students develop the best version of themselves and prepare for the professions of the 21st century.
According to Pearson’s second Global Learner Survey, published in August 2020, 86% of the students worldwide believe online learning will be part of the higher education experience moving forward; in addition, 9 of every 10 learners agree that providers need to adapt faster to the needs of today’s students.
Moreover, 84% of learners agree that colleges and universities need to do more to help retrain or re-skill current students, staff and alumni, and that universities play an important role in reshaping the current economy and promoting lifelong learning.
In this new normal, it has never been more important to have robust, and easy to use online learning platforms and library systems that amplify the learning process and fulfill the needs and learning preferences of the entire community.
However in many situations, these solutions are sub-optimal. A new category and breed of fully integrated learning technologies, content access and learning services has emerged, so-called “unlimited learning ecosystems” to solve this problem.
Here are some examples of common challenges academic institutions face and how a fully customized learning ecosystem can address them and benefit all key stakeholders – students, faculty and alumni:
- The learning experience universities provide is not in line with the modern trends that your students love. Why? Because the online approach universities have been offering students and faculty members tends to be filled with friction: you need to enroll in 5 or 6 different platforms, often the latest titles are not even in the databases, access is not mobile friendly, content can often be accessed only online, while also students find themselves navigating between PDFs, and there is a lack of educational materials in other familiar formats such as audio or video. That is why we are convinced that education needs a more unified experience that works in all devices and has both online and offline access.
- Digital content access often follows a Google-like approach where they can search through everything (though sometimes in multiple platforms). It is practically impossible in this manner for content to be curated for each end user. As everyone is different, and society has become more impatient and demanding, this process doesn’t work well for everyone. Instead, a user experience that is more similar to the series and movies platforms (such as Netflix) or to the music on-demand software (such as Spotify) that we usually use and are so easy for us to navigate is much better. A fully personalized experience where content recommendations are offered to each unique student, faculty and alumnus thanks to an artificial Intelligence powered system that is able to learn from every user’s interests, timings, previous consumption habits and more is the only way digital education will generate true engagement.
- Students need to develop key critical skills in a competitive and rapidly changing job markets and traditional curricula sometimes need additional support to keep up to date. This is why having unlimited access to quality content and complementing learning experiences are key. You could be complementing your mandatory reads with Ted Talks, with the latest podcasts on leadership or science, or even with that audio book everyone in your industry is talking about. Instead of learning in a classroom, why not enroll in a learning path at your own time? No matter the field a student, alumni or faculty is in, he or she needs to know the latest trends, and also need to be developing the required soft skills and technical skills to be a great leader and innovator.
- Learning must be continuous and adaptable to different pedagogies. Not all learning can be in a classroom, either physical or digital, when there are so many specific skills you are looking to acquire. How many enrolling in a learning path, at your own time, to brush up on your Microsoft Excel skills? How about learning collaboratively with other peers via a learning club, focused on entrepreneurship? Wouldn’t it be exciting to learn with like-minded others? Only in a learning ecosystem, can there be unlimited learning experience possibilities to cater to all skill areas and learning goals.
- Acquiring new content should be fast, flexible and on-demand. Why? To accommodate the ongoing learning needs of our entire community, both academic, professional and general knowledge in its orientation, it is important to have a vast pool of content but also the process for acquiring new materials should be on-demand, title by title selection, rather than via mass catalogs. Differently in an unlimited learning ecosystem, you can have access to millions of titles, catering to all subjects and formats, which is being constantly refreshed so everyone can find what they want. And with only two-clicks additional titles can be selected by anyone (upon approval), similar to the shopping experience in Amazon. With this different way of doing things, everyone wins and promotes more hunger for learning whilst libraries will also save money on buying what they truly need for each individual, title by title.
After over a decade of working in the educational technology sector across almost 50 countries, ODILO has determined that to achieve unlimited learning, it is necessary to put the user at the heart of technology and not adopt a “one size fits all” approach, as each individual learns differently.
With all this and more in mind, ODILO has pioneered the “unlimited learning ecosystem” which can fully adapt to the needs, values and learning preferences of each of the members of its educational community, in a completely personalized way.
By using data-driven and AI-powered solutions, the experience can be personalized for each end-user. With an integrated content market with more than 3 million titles of all formats (ebooks, audio books, magazines, courses, podcasts, and more) as well as infinite possible learning experiences there are truly limitless learning possibilities. And by unifying resources in one place, the best, frictionless experience is offered.
ODILO’s unlimited learning ecosystem is also about deepening the sense of community and promoting more knowledge share and collaboration across the whole academic community. There is a fully integrated learning experience platform that supports customizable and interactive Learning Clubs and Book Clubs for the whole community or teams that can be hosted by faculty members, alumni, or even the author of a certain title him/her self. There are also individualized learning paths that support learners in their career development or virtual classrooms that make the student stay easily connected with other students and teachers and access needed course materials.
If you would like to know more about you can build your own unlimited learning ecosystem, tailored to your entire educational community, please contact us today for a personalized demo.