In May 2023, Columbia University hosted the conference "Leveling the Learning Curve," bringing together industry leaders, educators, and students to explore the future of online education. The event featured prominent figures in the field, including Dan Avida from Engageli, John Baker from D2L/Brightspace, Philip Fedchin from OSUN, and Erica Kaufman from OSUN/Bard. This article presents some key takeaways from the panel discussion, shedding light on innovative approaches to online learning and the transformative power of visionary platforms.
In case you missed the conference, here are some highlights:
Seizing post-pandemic opportunities:
The panelists highlighted the vast opportunity to reintegrate the over 100 million students who dropped out during the pandemic. While Zoom served as an emergency response tool, combining online learning with high-quality face-to-face experiences offers a more promising future. This hybrid model enables students to be both on-campus and online learners simultaneously, empowering them to actively participate in their educational journeys.
Zoom's limitations and the rise of Engageli:
Dan Avida, co-founder of Coursera and CEO of Engageli, recognized the shortcomings of Zoom in meeting the needs of online learners. Engageli, backed by substantial funding, offers a collaborative and socially-oriented learning environment. Unlike traditional video conferencing, Engageli allows students to engage with instructors at virtual tables and incorporates visual tools for seamless content creation. Real-time scanning simplifies course creation, making Engageli a promising alternative to Zoom.
Emphasizing collaborative learning over individualized silos:
The panelists addressed the importance of collaborative learning experiences, distinguishing their platforms from those that focus solely on individual learning journeys. John Baker stressed the need for personalized learning to revolve around connection and human interaction. Data from Coursera supports this approach, indicating significantly higher retention rates when students take courses together. Collaborative learning not only improves retention but also equips students with essential collaboration skills.
What about the introverts in the room?
Engageli's table feature was highlighted as a valuable tool for introverted learners, providing a comfortable space for engagement. Clickstream data on Engageli revealed high completion rates for polls and quizzes, as well as active participation in chats. Additionally, learners can disable their cameras while still allowing instructors to observe their body language.
In conclusion, the conference "Leveling the Learning Curve" showcased the transformative potential of online education and visionary platforms. As we navigate the post-pandemic landscape, it is clear that a hybrid model, combining online and in-person experiences, offers a promising future for education. Engageli emerged as a leading platform, addressing the limitations of Zoom and providing a collaborative and socially-oriented learning environment. The panelists emphasized the importance of collaborative learning over individualized silos, recognizing the value of connection and human interaction in the educational journey. Engageli's table feature also caters to introverted learners, ensuring their comfort and active engagement. As we move forward, it is crucial to embrace these innovative approaches and platforms that empower students to be active participants in their education. By leveling the learning curve, we can create a more inclusive, engaging, and transformative educational landscape for all.