Artificial Intelligence & Big Data are All Set to Revolutionise the Indian Education

Zishaan Hayath, Founder & CEO, Toppr Toppr is one of India’s leading e-Learning platforms which provides many features such as video lectures, goals, bookmarks, doubts on chats, test series, previous papers, leader board, challenges, and many others, to enable students prepare for their respective examinations.

‘Hello and welcome to your digital learning assistant’. This could be a greeting that students will be accustomed to hearing in the very near future. With the speed at which advanced technology like artificial intelligence (AI)is developing, it will not be long before it revolutionises the very perception of education. But, is this change even needed? Can India walk hand-in-hand with this change and embrace it? Currently, traditional education methods have adopted a one-size-fits-all approach. The same teaching methodologies are used to teach hundreds of students. There is little regard for individual learning speeds, computational abilities, and memorising capacity. The use of technology with education can change this and bring personalisation to education.

What about Indian education?
The scenario of education in India is very different from the world. There are close to 250 million children enrolled in schools, and 60 percent of these attend government schools. Many government schools are stretched for infrastructure and resources, especially quality teachers. Above all, being a developing country, India has an abysmal student teacher ratio. For this, it was ranked 135th out of 163 countries. Not only did it lose to developed countries like U.S. & UK, but also lost to countries of similar economic conditions and population density like Cuba, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. Let’s find out why is it important, and how can technology be a huge help to the Indian education industry.

Why is student teacher ratio an important factor in quality of education?
When there are a large number of students per teacher, the quality of education takes a big hit. Teachers cannot adjust the pace of their lectures to suit the needs of all students. For some, the pace is too fast, and they miss-out on understanding complex concepts. For others, the pace is too slow, and these
students lose interest. Teachers are also not always able to solve the queries of every student within the limitations of school hours. They are burdened with a large number of answer sheets to be corrected in a short span of time. This results in variations of gradation for similar levels of answers. Also, they only have time to grade students instead of giving them valuable and personalised feedback.

The Indian education industry is valued at $100 billion. In spite of such a large volume, the teaching methodologies are largely traditional. Smartphones and internet connections are available even in rural areas, but the concept of using technology to facilitate education has barely been touched. With the help of AI, ML, and Big Data, the impact that technology can make to the education industry is unprecedented.

"Technology is set to dominate the way education is delivered. With its team of engineers and entrepreneurs, India can become a leading force in this field"

How can AI, ML & Big Data help?
Personalised Learning & Feedback: Advanced technology can be used to adjust the pace of content depending on the learning speed of individual students. Due to this, students will neither get bored by slow teaching, nor will they play catch-up with a fast paced lecture. Moreover, it can also be used to provide in-depth, insightful feedback to every individual student instead of simply awarding a grade. It can provide a subject wise strength and weakness analysis, along with highlighting areas where they have been repeatedly going wrong. It can also show students where they stand amongst their peers. With sufficient time, it is capable of providing qualitative feedback for more complex answering formats like essays. This will provide a big boost to their overall learning process.

Adaptive Learning Paths: Advanced technology can observe the learning pattern and test behaviour of every student. It gauges concepts that a student finds difficult or easy. It can use this data to then restructure the content based on the abilities of a student. It can create unique learning paths for every student. This technology will also be capable of creating personalised improvement strategies to help students prepare for competitive exams. It can personalise learning across age groups, grasping capacities, and interests. Due to this, children will always learn in a structure designed for them, instead of trying to fit their learning style into a predefined box.

24×7 Support to Students: Natural language processing(NLP)combined with optical character recognition(OCR)among other algorithms can solve doubts of students instantly. In all, a student has to do is click a picture of the doubt and send it like a normal chat on the doubts app or helpline. The bot will then sift through millions of data points to either give an exact answer and explanation to the student, or that of a similar question. The advantage of having such a bot is that it is constantly evolving. It will learn and store more information with every doubt and query uploaded by students. This reduces the dependencies of the availability of tutors and their skill level on a various topics. Advanced technology can provide reliable and accurate answers in just a few seconds at any point of time.

Technology is set to dominate the way education is delivered. With its team of engineers and entrepreneurs, India can become a leading force in this field. It can use technology to ensure than within a very short span of time, high-quality education is available for any and every child in the country.