It was the late 2010's. School, college and coaching class students were busy attending on-campus courses they had secured admission for. They were taking assignments home and submitting in person after completing them. Their only exposure to internet was limited to searching for references on Wikipedia and other sources of information. Teachers, professors, administrative staff had complete access and control to whatever they were supposed to do in the course of their duties.

Come 2020's and look what has happened…the education world has been metamorphosed completely. Covid-19 pandemic has greatly distorted the structure, delivery, and administration of education at its core. All forms of education are drastically jeopardized due to the novel coronavirus. In the past and current academic year, students, and teachers not only lost time but the effectiveness of education was also compromised. The foremost challenge today is to bring uniform online teaching, learning, and testing methods and technology platforms for all the educational institutes across the country. It is also important to note that the understanding and adaptation to the digital platforms for education, such as converting existing curriculum content into digital, improving effectivity and efficiency of digital education delivery model will require a mammoth effort driven with a clear, recognized strategic and tactical plan at every level. Lastly, it will have to be in line with the new National Education Policy 2020 guidelines.

In today's world, everyone needs a learn how to learn remotely. There is a plethora of platforms available today in the market. Whether you are an individual seeking to enhance your skills, educator or administrative officer of a school or college or running your own coaching classes, how do you go about choosing an eLearning platform that serves your needs? Depending on your role, you have various questions in mind, such as:

  • How can we increase an engagement of a participant in a development program?
  • How can ROI or progress be measured in the learning & development process?
  • How can we involve managers, coaches or mentors in the development of professionals
  • Can my school or college afford an eLearning platform? I am happy with free tools available today.

You need to think from ground up and choose carefully from various options available to you. Here are top 10 reasons you must look at before deciding on eLearning platform for your specific needs:

  1. Adaptive Learning: Adaptive learning should allow genuine assessments and filtering of candidates for progression. Features should allow multimedia integration as Assessment evidence to make the assessment and learning more interactive.
  2. Collaborative Online Learning – Learning through discussions, exchange of perspectives, ideas and interaction allows a greater engagement in the learning process. The teacher is no longer the custodian of knowledge but a facilitator, guide and a critical assessor guiding towards learning objectives. This type of learning in a collaborative environment requires clarity of the teacher's role, authority and learning outcomes.
  3. Built for education delivery: Goes beyond the simplistic Webinar or Online Meeting tools presently used for imparting class-room trainings. Webinar and live streaming are features, enables training of large group of people at the same time and provides unmatched flexibility.
  4. End to end: Engaged with before, during and after all interventions acting as an anchoring tool and content hub for all development initiatives.
  5. Supports wide demographics: Provides language agnostic capabilities. Help in increasing the reach of the platform to a wider set of audiences.
  6. Affordable: Being feature-rich and end-to-end doesn't mean it should be expensive. It should be affordable and should add additional strain on finances.
  7. Immediate: Launching your digital presence should be fast and quick. It should take less than 48–72 hours after deciding.
  8. Unlimited Capacity: eLearning platform should not restrict number of teachers, students, or assignments. It should provide flexibility in content management. It should provide recording of session in cloud for future reference.
  9. Simple to use: Interface should be intuitive and straightforward while providing all the benefits of technologically advanced solution. Intuitive mechanism offering self-paced or real-time mode of learning and assessment.
  10. Analytical insights: Whether it is for a student or provider, the platform should give meaningful insights from time to time to track overall progress and operation.
  11. Ease of Administration: Platform should provide flexible administrative panels for teachers, accountant, administrator etc.

If you were caught off-guard in 2020 academic year and ended up making adhoc decisions to continue running the show, time is now to rethink your longer-term strategy. Whether you are a student, academician or an administrative staff of a school or college, you need to assess the reality and impact of pandemic. Several researchers predict that the current situation will continue to affect our lives at least until year 2023. Are we in a position to fulfill our dreams and our duties with the choices we made in 2021 or we need to rethink? It may be wiser to reset and start new.