Accessible Ed Tech: Inclusive global reach

In the words of Layman To comprehend the gravity of enabling accessibility in its true essence, one must analyze what an inaccessible world looks like.Try navigating the web while unplugging the mouse; use your phone by placing your hands under covers from where you can’t see the screen; limit access to the scope of content […]

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Published By

Ajay Sohal

Published On

July 12, 2022

In the words of Layman

To comprehend the gravity of enabling accessibility in its true essence, one must analyze what an inaccessible world looks like.
Try navigating the web while unplugging the mouse; use your phone by placing your hands under covers from where you can’t see the screen; limit access to the scope of content or attend a video call with the volume set to a bare minimum. It can make you ponder how difficult a simple activity can turn out to be and imagine sometimes a single individual is coupled with multiple disabilities.

Now coming to ED-TECH, all the platforms must be integrated with assistive technologies as education is the best assistance anyone can have, including the disabled.
If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.
And equal access to learning programs online is equivalent to enabling a man with a skillset for a lifetime. Digital accessibility on education platforms enables every learner to move forward at their pace.

Additionally, it is only imperative and necessary for the education platforms to be compliant with the accessibility laws and hearken to the moral obligation. In its entirety, an accessible website capacitates more users as more thought goes into making it inclusive at every step, begetting positive brand conception.

The reckless surge of the pandemic led to the adaption of Ed-Tech like never before and the demand has increased exponentially, flooding the market with diverse online learning platforms, catering to different subject matters.

Chart explaining the forecast of the Asia Pacific Education Technology Market by size and by sector: preschool, k-12, higher education, and others for the period of 2020 to 2030

According to Grand View Research 2021, The education technology market size was valued at USD 106.46 billion and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16.5% from 2022 to 2030. 

E-learning Explained

The journey from print media to digital media pretty much sums up the present-day classroom. Fundamentally, the Internet in itself is an Ed-Tech.
The transition from text and pictures to the last decade’s bloom of video streaming services (YouTube, Vimeo, Daily Motion, etc.) has enabled us to become self-educators as well.

With this attained independence and after the rollout of higher network speeds (3G/4G/5G) along with penetration of mobile/laptop devices around the world; ushered into the creation of highly interactive online learning platforms and apps, bringing the classroom to your room. And with COVID changing the world dynamics, this platform is perpetual.
This generates the need to understand how binding assistive technologies alleviate the SERP (Search Engine Results Pages) ranking and empowers learners to have unprecedented access.

The ed-Tech industry is not only limited to learners but educators as well; it is the preferred choice for Millennials and Gen Z. The lack of web accessibility can restrict learners with intellectual, physical, sensory, and mental disabilities.
Education Technology is an excelling digital platform swarmed with tough emerging competitors trying to surpass its predecessor. It is the face of present-day tuition centers where schoolgoers to hobbyists have 24/7 access to their learning and craft. This has enabled learners from all socioeconomic and geographical backgrounds to acquire free-of-cost to premium-priced learning content. Creators and publishers both understand how crucial the underlying factors are to reaching the global audience and generating impact; COVID has been a blessing in disguise for the ed-tech industry and made us all conditionally dependent on the same.
It worked as a catalyst in the development of accessible digital content.

Some simple tweaks like using easy-to-understand language, captioning & subtitling, transcription, adding alt text to images, using the right color contrasts, embedding screen reader technology, voice-over-text features, keyboard accessibility, accessible hyperlinks, large buttons, organized page structure are some important aspects to be considered from the accessibility point of view.
With the rapid technological advancements in the ed-tech industry and better adaptation to new learning styles, it is only palpable that the cavity between the abled and disabled is narrowing by the day. The freedom to access anytime, anywhere is in itself an accessibility feature.

Accessibility to Shaping Lives

Technology-entwined classroom promotes personalized learning, satiates curiosity, and provides multiple approaches to the same problem; birthing problem solvers and out-of-the-box thinkers. The earlier it starts, the more adaptive it gets for the students.

No doubt, with cloud computing remolding education structure, a typical classroom has been toppled over with interactive whiteboards, for good. With great power comes great responsibility; implying the IoT devices should be coupled with assistive technologies. It empowers learners with physical or cognitive disabilities to have unfettered access to digital literacy and use the platform as the wind beneath their wings. The same content can be uploaded in multiple formats (text, audio, and video) facilitating inclusivity.

Chart denoting growth in total global expenditure on Education Technology and the percentage of annual digital spend for the years 2020 and 2025

According to HolonIQ, the global growth in Edtech expenditure is expected to reach $404B by 2025 from $227B in 2020. The digital spending on Edtech stood at 3.6% in 2020 and is expected to increase to 5.2% by 2025.

Whether you are a greenhorn or have tested the waters, we can be your trusted guide to an accessible digital learning platform. Our remediation methods comprising of aggressive audits have proven to be effective in enabling the content to its potential global reach.
If you are looking for a companion in creating inclusive digital spaces, get in touch with us today.