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Will EdTech ever truly replace our educators?

By Soffos Team
March 11, 2021

Human learning leaders will always have an important role to play in the delivery of education, regardless of the growing pace of tech adoption.

Naturally, as EdTech solutions begin to make their mark on corporate training programmes, there maybe concerns that increasing automation within a traditionally ‘human’ domain should be a cause for alarm. Some might be worried about how the role of HR leaders and mentors might change as remote working continues to stand in the way of in-person, in-office professional development.

However, the main concern should not be whether artificial intelligence (AI) and automation will replace people’s jobs. Rather, it is a question of how businesses can create a culture in which technology and employees are able to work hand-in-hand to provide effective, human-driven learning experiences.

EdTech is here to support our educators

Let’s begin by exploring the importance of peer-to-peer (P2P) learning, and why the emergence of EdTech appears to pose a risk to its very existence. In a workplace setting, P2P learning describes the largely informal and unconscious sharing of knowledge between colleagues. It can occur at any time or place – often, through the medium of impromptu conversations during lunch breaks and in-between meetings, or simply by watching how more senior colleagues and peers complete tasks and handle unexpected situations.

How, then, can all of this take place when we might never return to a traditional, 9-5 office setting?

First of all, we must remember that while such interactions might require more intention and forethought as we continue to rely on videoconferencing tools, these solutions still encourage employees to ‘learn by osmosis’, so to speak. Even when interacting with their peers in a digital format, it is possible to create a space for colleagues from different areas of the business to share their experiences and offer advice where they might otherwise not have the opportunity to interact in the real world.

Meanwhile, the introduction of sophisticated EdTech can actually elevate the experience and solve many of the common pitfalls of real-life training. It is no secret that traditional training sessions often fail to deliver the valuable learning experience needed to help employees succeed in their roles. This generally comes down to the effects of time constraints, and an absence of opportunities for professionals to apply what they have learnt within the context of their own roles.

AI-powered EdTech can remedy this by lifting the administrative burden from the shoulders of educators. Not only can technology deliver all of the information needed through interactive and engaging platforms, but it can also provide detailed analytics about how learners are progressing with their digital learning, and where they might need extra support.

Having these insights will enable learning leaders to direct their focus instead to the most important element of their job – namely, providing career development opportunities and guiding employees as they navigate the ever-changing jobs market. They will have more time on their hands to facilitate scenarios in which employees are encouraged to put their training into practice and test their new-found knowledge and skills, while inspiring discussions among co-workers to help cement their understanding.

In this way, technology will enhance, rather than replace, the performance of human educators. Rather than severing the human element, it can instead forge even closer relationships between mentors and mentees, that might otherwise be spent on simply delivering information.

Making training enjoyable and valuable, while carving out an important role for the people in charge of up-skilling our workforce, is something that we’re very passionate about here at Soffos. If you’d like to learn more about how we’re disrupting the corporate EdTech market, then feel free to drop us a line if you have any questions.