AI • June 4, 2023

Shape the Future of Higher Education with Personalized Learning

Spotify, Netflix, Amazon, Instagram, Facebook - if any of these appear in your list of recently used apps, you have most likely experienced personalization. Personalized content, customization, and tailored services are some of the buzzwords that have set user expectations at high levels. Personalization has infiltrated most industries with the Higher Education sector being no exception.

The higher education sector has accelerated the adoption of new technologies and methodologies into the learning process with personalized learning turning out to be a favorite in the recent past, especially during this digital education revolution. The world of academia is becoming more personalized and the industry has well embraced this movement thanks to recent advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and big data.

Personalized learning is an approach that involves customizing a student’s learning experience based on certain factors which include, but may not be limited to, a student’s strengths, needs, interests, aspirations, abilities, cultural backgrounds, etc. The simple end goal of incorporating this is to have more students succeed in their studies.

AI and data are the cornerstones in the process of creating personalized content and accommodating personal preferences and learning styles for each of the students. Taking learning experiences a notch higher with AI also means expanding the scope of the effectiveness of learning content, and the availability of flexible modes of instruction, mainly online learning, via laptops, tablets, and smartphones.

Personalized learning aspects enhanced by AI

  • Self-paced Learning
    • Self-paced learning models grant students control over the pace at which they learn, unlike conventional classroom learning methods. This is an important aspect that contributes to self-paced learning being the most preferred among e-learning models. AI can be used to automate the delivery of learning content as required by the student and thus, provide them with the framework to work independently, no matter what their circumstances are.
  • Insights to course instructors
    • AI empowers instructors by providing them with key insights on a student’s learning process through easy collection, interpretation, and visualization of a huge amount of data. This includes insights on a student’s progress, difficulties, modality used to best assimilate information (reading notes, listening to an audio lecture, or watching a video), thereby helping teachers easily identify and assist students through early-stage interventions.
  • Change in course content or curriculum
    • AI detects the shortcomings in the courses and content provided to students and can make corrective suggestions to be incorporated in the curriculum based on the student’s performance and feedback.

For example, in Coursera (a popular massive open online course (MOOC) provider), when a high proportion of students get the answer to a question wrong, the system alerts the course instructor of the situation so that the necessary corrective action can be taken.

  • Bridge skill gaps
    • Recent studies have found that investments in employee training can lead up to as much as a 24% increase in revenue. Thus, now it’s more important than ever to provide personalized workplace training. AI can help identify skill gaps and aid organizations in providing training content that is most relevant to the employer’s role, knowledge base, and skill set. Personalized training programs can be provided in multiple languages thereby breaking down geographical barriers and providing employees with ownership of their learning experience.
  • Increase student engagement
    • With personalized learning comes higher student engagement and collaboration. Addressing the different needs of students enhances engagement, which then leads to high levels of motivation. This motivation will prevent distractions, disengagement from study material, and overall poor performance in their studies. AI conversational tools or chatbots can be leveraged to achieve this engagement. They can be used to teach a lesson through a series of messages, get feedback from teachers, provide feedback for course content, attempt quizzes, assignments, etc.

The primary ingredient of personalized learning is a large amount of data. An ethical, secure, and transparent way of collecting and processing student data is essential. Thus, by harnessing the power of AI and data, personalized learning experiences can be created for students, which in turn address most of the challenges faced by universities, including high dropout rates, disengaged students and the ineffectiveness of the traditional 'one size fits all’ approach to learning.

Get in touch with our experts to leverage AI to equip your organization with the proper tools to streamline processes and ensure overall student success.

Written by

Rachana S Raju

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