Is The EdTech Industry A Billion-Dollar Opportunity?
Students are exhausted. They live in a world that tells them their worth correlates with their grades. If they don’t perform well on standardized tests, they have a lower likelihood of continuing their education. It’s not how education should work.
As Albert Einstein himself said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid.”
Then there’s the fact that learning is downright expensive. College textbooks often cost thousands of dollars. Many public schools even find ways to squeeze in all types of fees.
What EdTech Does
Where there is necessity, there is innovation. With an education system that does not properly support every individual, the EdTech industry is attempting to make learning easier and more accessible for students.
According to Learnovate, the EdTech industry is “really unique — from preschool through higher education and into corporate and lifelong learning, EdTech has the the potential to drive economic growth and profoundly transform how we learn.”
EdTech develops a variety of products and services. These include everything from learning games to tutoring platforms. It involves anything that can supplement classroom learning.
Textbook publishers are attempting to cross into the digital sphere and participate in the EdTech industry. Ethan Senack says, a higher education associate at U.S. PIRG, stated, “Even as they move into etextbooks, publishers incorporate paywalls, expiration dates, and printing restrictions that further continue the practices they’ve used to control the traditional market.”
EdTech can fall prey to the same bureaucracy faced by traditional education. That’s where startup companies come in. Inc.com notes, “As schools transition away from paper, textbooks, and projectors, there’s a growing opportunity for startups to create new tools geared toward educators. Perhaps not surprisingly, VC funding for EdTEch startups was estimated to approach $3 billion last year according to CB Insights.”
The EdTech industry has received $3 billion in funding. That means there are major players who have that money. And, Studypool is one of them.
What is Studypool?
Studypool is a new kind of online learning platform. Do you need a tutor for a particular subject? Studypool can hook you up with the best tutors. Do you only need a certain question answered? You can post a question and let others help you answer it for a small fee. Are you a tutor who wants to help students but you don’t want to (or can’t) sit down with an individual client for several hours at a time? Studypool lets you bid on the questions you are best qualified to answer.
According to Studypool’s CEO Richard Werbe, “There is a massive upside for disruption in the EdTech sector. This is because of the impersonality of most tutor-to-student interactions. Some of the largest EdTech platforms with billion-dollar budgets have attempted to create very large repositories of assignments or tutoring platforms to solve this issue of engagement. However, the results have been negligible.”
He added, “Studypool takes the novel and efficient approach of micro-tutoring. This allows the student to quickly specify the exact concept they’re having trouble with and receive a reliable answer on short notice. It’s a multifaceted tool that aims to broaden interactivity and engagement while remaining lightweight and efficient as a platform.”
The Benefits of Studypool
Students and parents don’t have to pay a tutor by the hour. Time is also a rare commodity for kids these days. Therefore, micro-tutoring is efficient fore everyone. Answers to questions posted typically arrive in ten minutes.
Teachers didn’t create Studypool. Instead, it was developed by students themselves. They knew exactly what their educational journeys needed. Richard Werbe and his partner, Jimmy Zhong, were only 19 and in college when they founded Studypool. They wanted to make tutoring digestible.
Werbe says in an interview with Forbes, “I noticed that my classmates would often pull all-nighters on school work such as accounting homework and were often so stressed out by the time the weekend came around that they could barely enjoy their free time. A lot of my friends would have benefited from tutoring but either couldn’t find the time in their hectic schedules or couldn’t afford the steep price that academic help often costs.”
Sounds relatable, right? Where Werbe and Zhong saw necessity, they innovated. And, the result was something that can revolutionize the way students ask for help.