Spring 2022 show insights
Throughout the spring, we’ve been making our return to high-profile learning industry shows in the UK. Here are five key things we learned from attending Bett 2022, this year’s London Book Fair and the 22nd annual Learning Technologies conference.
1. Face-to-face events are back.
Footfall at all three events was strong and everyone we spoke to relished being back in busy settings where in-person interaction was front and centre. Exhibitor confidence was high and, while we saw a handful of empty stands at each of the events we visited, it’s clear that people are ready to return to large-scale conferences. We also loved the increasingly inventive methods we saw to attract visitors to exhibitor stands.
Zoom calls have their merits but they rarely come with free popcorn, pizza or a gin bar!
2. Content is the differentiator.
It might sound obvious, but the biggest takeaway we took from our conference visits was that the importance of high quality, accessible, engaging educational content can’t be underestimated, regardless of the setting. Whether it’s publishing learning resources for students, creating assessment materials for qualifications or designing continuous professional development (CPD) e-learning courses for membership bodies, content needs to be produced in an impactful, meaningful way to deliver the desired learning outcomes. Effective pedagogies are central to this process, enabling learners to gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter and apply those learnings at a practical level outside the classroom.
3. Demand for e-learning is growing in every educational setting.
It’s commonly said that one of the defining traits of the pandemic has been to accelerate changes that were already happening in society. This is especially true when it comes to e-learning. Although digital learning was already widely adopted prior to 2020, academic institutions such as schools, colleges and universities had to pivot to remote education – almost always digitally delivered – in a matter of days thanks to the pandemic. The same was true for learning companies in every other field: suddenly asynchronous teaching or training (where online resources mean the instructor and learner don’t have to be in the same place at the same time) was at the core of nearly every educational offering. Almost all of Haremi’s digital projects since 2020 have had an asynchronous element. As we move into what’s hopefully a post-pandemic era, the lesson learned is that digital learning offers efficiency, scale and advantage, and is therefore becoming even more prevalent.
4. VR & AR are no longer just emerging trends.
In a crowded EdTech marketplace, an ever-greater number of providers are offering virtual reality and augmented solutions, particularly in the workplace learning space where vocational skills can be taught or tested in an immersive environment. The breadth of different VR and AR offerings – and how quickly the technology is evolving – were some of the defining features of this year’s Learning Technologies conference. Whether it’s in academic settings, lifelong learning or corporate training, it’s clear that virtual, augmented or extended reality technologies have the potential to make education more applied, relevant and engaging in today’s tech-driven world.
5. Adaptive learning & personalisation are key to reaching today’s – and tomorrow’s – learners.
The crowded halls at Bett confirmed that EdTech providers are increasingly offering adaptive and personalised solutions to meet student learning needs. Many of the more established platform offerings we saw featured a blend of:
- continuous assessment to diagnose competence levels and learning styles,
- customisable lesson plan functionality to match content and exercises to individual learning needs, and
- data suites that allow instructors to measure learners’ progress at a granular level.
At Haremi, we’re seeing adaptive and personalised learning move beyond the schools, colleges and universities space to the vocational and workforce learning sectors, where traditional 'one size fits all' training infrastructures can be replaced by offerings that are more specific to the requirements of individual employees.
Contact us if you would like more information on how Haremi can help you keep your organisation at the cutting-edge of digital learning.