The education sector has gone through many structural changes in the past few years. One of the most fascinating changes has undoubtedly been the digital disruption that we've began observing, especially with the rise of education technologies and online learning platforms.
More than 18 years ago, when my interest in the sector began to peak, edtech was barely a trend. At the time, I remember thinking to myself that this was going to be the future of education, and I'm more and more convinced every day that I was right. With the internet becoming almost a necessity in every home, and career prospects tightening for young professionals, investing in a new revolutionary form of learning and teaching appeared to me as a no-brainer.
I was no stranger to entrepreneurship back then, and the idea of helping people learn at their own pace in the comfort of their homes was very appealing to me. One of the most challenging aspects of teaching is getting close to the students to ensure you can provide the right materials and strategy to secure their success, especially in a tough and competitive environment such as work or school. This is where I believe edtech has the most potential: It allows educators to provide just-in-time guidance to students when they most need it, with a simple click of a button.
It has always seemed counter-productive to me to have a "one-size-fits-all" education system. In my experience teaching over 30,000 students worldwide, I quickly realized that students have different needs and preferences when it comes to learning and it is crucial for educators to adapt and deliver a personalized and customizable learning experience. Additionally, with university fees constantly on the rise, it is very common for students to have side jobs, which makes it even harder to find time to learn.
The idea behind creating wyzPREP was to be able to provide comprehensive learning materials to students and young professionals looking to get an MBA. With the explosion of new technologies over the past decade and good jobs becoming more competitive to attain, higher education and highly sought-after degrees are more valuable than ever before and it is essential to be well-prepared before taking tests such as the GMAT, which are highly competitive and often favored by the elites.
Online education is most definitely the ideal tool for busy professionals and students looking to prepare for such important and potentially life-changing exams. This is why I decided to invest my time and money into creating a tool that would not only allow users to interact with their tutors, but also a whole community to share and discuss material and grow as an online cohort.
I believe the future of education lies in technology and anytime, anywhere accessibility. In the coming years, I wouldn't be surprised to see artificial intelligence become a major component to online education and become incorporated in everyday learning materials and I want to play an important role in this revolution. Ultimately, we are developing wyzPREP to become the first edtech platform that will teach and learn with the students who work with the system. In addition to the hard skills for learning a subject, we place a high value on delivering the soft skills such as motivation and confidence, which are essential to succeed in higher education.
In this day and age, technology should be an integral part of the learning experience, and with the emergence of the "online classroom," it will be. All it takes is a good internet connection, great educators and motivated students.
About the author: Todd Rothman is 15-plus year education expert and passionate higher education enthusiast. He has tutored more than 30,000 students directly and indirectly with products he has brought to market, and founded his own tutoring company, Todd's Test Prep. He is currently the co-founder of global test prep platform, wyzPREP.
Edited for length and clarity by Nicole Taylor. Have a great entrepreneurial story to tell? Contact Nicole at firstname.lastname@example.org with your pitch.