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Demand For Online Education is Growing Are Providers Ready?

Online learning is continuing to gain popularity and participation: Universities have begun new online programs in response to the increased enrollment in 2020.

Online learning tools are increasingly used by lifelong learners as well as Ph.D. students to acquire new skills Despite the apparent surge in demand, many providers continue to struggle with establishing programs that potential students will find compelling. Demand For Online Education is Growing Are Providers Ready?

Local and national universities, as well as emerging online education titans and more recent nondegree providers, are just a few of the numerous competitors vying for a piece of the online education market.

Given the enormity of these market shifts and the growing rivalry they portend, it is possible that suppliers of online education will need to make more than minimal modifications in order to survive, advance, and succeed.

Demand For Online Education is Growing Are Providers Ready?

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Major Market Forces

An increase in competition, the consolidation of a few significant companies, and an infusion of investment are four of the main market dynamics that are transforming the online education business.

In response to increased demand for online education, vendors are now vying for the attention of a wide demographic range of potential students.

There will be 220 million students enrolled in MOOCs by the end of 2021, up from just 300,000 in 2011. A 36 percent increase in the number of hybrid and distance-only students at traditional universities between 2012 and 2019 was accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic’s circumstances in 2020.

As student interest in online degrees has grown, the online education market has become more concentrated around a limited number of well-known providers.

IPEDS total enrollment data shows that the overall market for degree programs decreased by about 3% from 2019 to 2020, but four of the largest open-access online education providers—Southern New Hampshire, Liberty, Western Governors, and Grand Canyon—had an average increase of 11% in total enrollment.

Online degree-granting universities face competition from newer, digital-native entrants who are aiming for the same demographic of students. Many start-ups in the digital education sector are taking advantage of increased venture capital funding.

There was an eight-fold rise in US edtech venture capital funding between 2017 and 2021, from $1 billion to $8 billion. Many edtech companies, such as Coursera (with an IPO value of over $4 billion in 2021), were successful in their first public offerings (IPOs).

Investment in edtech could grow as more and more services are made available online and universities move toward blended learning supported by cutting-edge digital tools.

Demand for online education has been bolstered by a rise in expectations for its quality. Furthermore, the distinction between degree and nondegree learning has been erased, creating a new set of educational competitors.

Coursera’s partnership with Google’s Grow with Google project has resulted in a significant surge in enrolment in courses like user experience design and data analytics.

There are a variety of programs available to students who aren’t interested in pursuing a degree. Those traditional online education providers who place a high value on degrees might wish to consider including these services as part of their expansion and competitive strategies.

Students are also more aware of the financial benefits of their educational investments as a result of increased demand and higher quality expectations.

A program’s or institution’s reputation may not be as important to certain students who want to work in lucrative fields like IT as the opportunity to learn in-demand skills.

Of those who took part in our learner segmentation survey, over half responded that they would only contemplate paying for education programs if the expected return on employment was good. Meanwhile, 21% claimed that they would only consider enrolling in a college if the institution was “top-ranked.”

Strategic Moves That Could Unlock Opportunities

Online education providers have the potential to grow as a result of these market factors, but doing so may necessitate hazardous activities such as modifying and pivoting their approaches.

By taking online courses, people of all ages can quickly learn the skills they need to succeed in these professions and develop in their careers.

There is a shortage of qualified workers in a wide range of industries, from healthcare to cybersecurity. Increasing numbers of workers are reassessing their employment possibilities while also pursuing higher-paying positions.

It is possible for online education providers who want to achieve these goals, attract students, and differentiate themselves from their competitors to consider three tactics: Integrate skill development and degree completion to satisfy the needs of both students and employers.

online education instituition

1. Meet student and labor market needs

Learning and knowledge development have traditionally taken precedence over career preparation in educational institutions in the past. For those who plan to take online courses, the return on investment (ROI) is more important than the type of professions they will be prepared for when they graduate.

The job economy is likewise changing rapidly. These changes necessitate revisions in degree requirements and program design in order to effectively prepare students for a rapidly evolving workplace. These three options should be considered by institutions:

Programs need to be tweaked to match the needs of the market. Many institutions, including alternative online universities, commonly construct programs using an archaic and prolonged strategy that is frequently distant from the needs of businesses and industries..

As a result, not only are graduates unable to meet market demands, but new programs to fill market gaps are rarely able to be developed quickly.

Schools can stay ahead of the curve by using an iterative “learn and design” process to create new programs, which includes identifying industry-wide trends and skill shifts in both the technical and non-technical fields, and then redesigning existing programs or developing new ones to better serve students.

For example, a Mexican institution found that new programs accounted for 34% of all new enrollment between 2016 and 2019.

Rather than relying on existing programs, this institution created new ones based on developments in the labor market and the most in-demand professions, then assessed whether or not competing institutions were offering programs that addressed these movements in the marketplace.

A content development team instead of many “schools” centralized the creation of new programs. This allowed them to finish in three months.

Combining degree-granting and non-degree-granting programs have shown to be fruitful. In the education sector, programs that lead to certification but not a degree have traditionally been seen as distinct from those that lead to a degree.

It’s impossible to say which one is better than the other. Certificate providers are now considered on par with more established institutions of higher learning by adult learners, who have recently begun to accept a larger choice of educational opportunities.

If colleges want to best serve the student population, they should consider integrating credit-bearing certifications or certificates into the broader process of earning a degree, thereby lowering the barriers between degree and non-degree programs.

Universities don’t have to invent the wheel every time they want to build such integrated programs. For students, traditional universities may cooperate with recognized nondegree players like Udacity or Grow with Google to provide an end-to-end solution for their educational needs.

Whereas students who aren’t pursuing a degree at a college or university could work with nondegree providers to get credit for their efforts and develop in that direction.

Through the EverUp Micro-Credential Program, CUNY teamed up with the New York Jobs CEO Council to offer normal degree programs with a 100-hour online intensive.

New York City’s biggest employers collaborated to produce these credentials, which are designed to help students land jobs and internships by teaching them particular skills.

2. Transform career planning and coaching services

According to McKinsey’s learner survey, 35 percent of respondents reported that a stagnated profession or a slow job search was their top reason for considering higher education.

Online schools might engage with students to create clear goals, work toward those goals, and modify their programs as necessary to give learners stronger and better-aligned professional outcomes and to increase the likelihood of finding a high-paying job in their chosen field of study.

Transform career planning and coaching services

Prior to graduating from college, many students began their professional lives by choosing a major in the first or second year of their degree program and searching for a job in that industry.

This model does not truly support learners during their journeys and assumes that learners are already well-informed about which programs or courses to pursue.

Simply giving education with minimal connection to a student’s post-graduate context is probably not enough to help students achieve their professional goals, especially in digital environments where networking and other kinds of exposure to careers may be lacking in quality and quantity.

According to a Strada poll, more than a third of individuals would change their major if they could. When it came to their major, people with higher salaries were less likely to regret their decision.

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About jitendravaswani

Jitendra Vaswani is the founder of SchemaNinja, a WordPress Plugin, and he is also the founder of multi-award-winning blog, BloggersIdeas.com, along with Digiexe.com, and Megablogging. He is a successful online marketer & award-winning digital marketing consultant. He has been featured on HuffingtonPost, BusinessWorld, YourStory, Payoneer, Lifehacker & other leading publications as a successful blogger & digital marketer.

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