The education sector has lagged behind other business verticals in leveraging the potential of emerging technologies. Until now, students across the world have continued their education under a brick-and-mortar classroom.
Though online learning was introduced years ago, its adoption had been quite limited until the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. The pandemic came as a silver lining for the education sector as the very way people teach and learn is now undergoing a transformation.
The sector finally utilized the transformative power of technology to improve the learning outcomes in classrooms across a wide spectrum of levels in a quick and radical way.
One of the crucial technologies that helped schools and other institutions adopt remote learning quickly is cloud computing. It basically refers to the network of computing resources that can be shared through the internet.
Using cloud computing, one can access software, platform, as well as infrastructure over the internet; and it is as simple as accessing a website on a web browser. You don’t need to install anything in the local memory of your system to access them. For example, instead of downloading MS Word to create a document, you can simply open Google (News - Alert) Docs on a web browser and create a new document. This technology has become so popular that professionals are now seeking Cloud computing bootcamp online to gain job-ready skills.
This article throws light on the interesting ways cloud computing can change the field of education.
5 Ways Cloud Computing is Transforming Education
The hype around cloud computing is real. And why not? Users get to work on powerful software with minimal to no up-front costs, fewer management headaches, and no infrastructure investments. Let us see how the education sector can tap into this promising technology.
Embrace digital transformation
For a long time, all the data of an educational institution has remained in the local memory of its systems. But with cloud computing, such institutions can use the vast amount of storage offered by the cloud platforms. Moreover, such storage requirements can be scaled up or down as and when required. This way, an institute can migrate all of its information over the cloud and access it anytime, anywhere. Evidently, it will lead to digital transformation of all the administrative and other tasks.
Support online distance learning
As we mentioned earlier, the COVID-19 pandemic forced educational institutions to move their operations online overnight. With cloud computing, these institutes can build a Learning Management System where all the learning materials can be uploaded.
Video lectures, assignments, notes, and many other files can be easily accessed through the internet by students from any location. The attendance record can also be maintained on the same platform. Moreover, through video conferencing, live virtual classes can be conducted, and students can interact in real-time with the mentors. These classes can also be recorded so that students can access them for future reference.
This is the major benefit that every industry gets by adopting cloud computing. All major cloud service platforms like Microsoft (News - Alert) Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) offer their cloud services on a pay-as-you-go model, meaning institutes need to pay only for the services they use.
Information and communication technology is one of the biggest expenses for schools, and by moving this into the cloud, the schools can cut huge costs related to supporting servers and a massive amount of data. Students can also save costs as they will not have to buy expensive books but rather access online editions of textbooks.
One of the concerns that organizations have while migrating to the cloud is data security, as cyberattacks have increased lately. However, cloud platforms offer advanced security solutions for an organization’s sensitive data. When it comes to the education sector, schools can adopt a VPN (a virtual private network) to ensure data security. VPN protocols enable automatic encryption of outgoing data and traffic. So, without compromising the integrity, the study materials of a school can be easily transferred to the students.
Cloud computing is already changing the way learners and instructors collaborate whether it is using tutorials, sharing documents, appearing for tests, or exploring video conferencing applications. This way, edtech solutions can witness innovation-driven growth, promote new ideas and reduce their ‘time-to-market’, thereby strengthening educational programs. The technology enables educational institutions to chase opportunities faster, increase the pace of their responsiveness, control costs, and achieve higher productivity and growth.
With so many advantages of cloud computing, schools and other educational institutions should embrace this technology as soon as possible. Remote learning is the new normal, and though students are now returning back to their schools, online learning is here to stay. Schools that are equipped to conduct their operations online and have embraced digital solutions are more likely to succeed in the future. It is also a good opportunity for professionals skilled in cloud computing. Cloud practitioners can help universities undergo digital transformation and embrace cloud-based solutions to offer their training programs.