E-learning has the potential to change the dynamics of learning and completely change the way we look at education. However, not many are aware what e-learning does exactly or how it functions? Well in layman terms e-learning involves usage of digital media and technology to deliver world-class learning experience. When it comes to e-learning, it usually involves in delivering learning experiences, normally these learning experiences include simulation of real-world classroom learning. Currently, the e-learning segment in Europe is still in infancy and it’s expected to grow gradually. Despite the vast scope of this segment in the European market, there are some challenges and hurdles. Let’s look at the various challenges and opportunities faced by the e-learning market in Europe.

The Current status of e-learning in Europe

E-learning in Europe is still not widely accepted as it is in USA or Australia. It is a reality for most of the businesses and educational institutions and Europeans generally have a disliking for it. The real problem here is the culture difference. Europeans are famous for their preference in face to face methods of communication in almost all the social activities. However, they prefer traveling shorter distances and this will no doubt affected how Europeans will eventually embrace e-learning technologies.

Constant evolution of e-learning to suit modern times is key

If e-learning is to become a success in Europe, it has to definitely adapt to the modern times by updating the technology. In order to make the content and teaching suited to the modern times, e-learning companies should do sufficient research on the source content available locally which is arguably the highest standard. The key challenges here being is the ability to convince local content providers such as universities and institutions across Europe to jump on the e-learning bandwagon. This also implies there would be more emphasis on the platforms and the tools. From a delivery point of view customization of content for different regions in Europe will help in the long run.

Creating focused learning experiences

Despite the success of Massive Open online courses (MOOC), it is nowhere close to being accepted as the perfect model for e-learning especially in regions where its growth is still in its infancy. One of the main problems MOOC face is the high drop out rates. Instead of following a replica of a traditional, semester experience, students are experimenting with different formats. Presently, in Europe, a lot of experimentation is being carried out, especially in areas where the e-learning deliverables need to be designed to suit the receding attention spans but still managing to pack a punch. Short courses are more preferred as they narrow down the learning objectives and are more specific in nature. Creating separate modules for the courses will help learners identify the right areas they can concentrate without affording to buy the whole package.

Engaging more learners

This is one of the biggest challenges faced by e-learning industries presently, companies are increasingly finding it difficult to manage the attention span of the learners with the content and the platform on a sustained basis. Traditionally in classrooms, this is achieved by the physical constraints, social behavior and the presence of a teacher. To target a larger user base and to extend the interest levels e-learning companies need to integrate social engagement aspects along with learning. Creating content for E-learning portal should be more interactive and easily understandable. Most of the e-learning companies are increasingly adding features such as group discussions and study groups in order to mimic a classroom environment.

Why the process of Gamification serves as the game-changer?

Gamification is currently playing a big role in making learning platforms more engaging and getting them to a larger audience. If you are wondering what exactly is gamification, it is more of a game based learning. Gamification in e-learning involves integrating game theory and game mechanics to non-game contexts with the main purpose of engaging users in solving problems. The main goal of gamification is to ensure the learners are motivated so that they can perform better. The future looks bright in this segment, as there is more potential with more realistic learning experiences using virtual and augmented reality.

Gamification by Numbers

Worldwide Revenues in 2016Predicted Forecasts in 2021
$2.6 billionExpected to surge $7.3 billion

67% of American Households play computer or video games

26% of those are aged above fifty years of age and 74% under the age of fifty.

E-learning future prospects in Europe

According to Ambient Insight, a US-based Market research firm the e-learning market size in Western Europe was worth around USD 8 billion in 2016 and Eastern Europe was worth around $1 billion. The growth spurt in the region was attributed to increasing adoption of these solutions in medium and small sized businesses. Currently, the market is growing at a much faster pace in USA and Australia. The European market is expected to increase and grow in terms of investment and acceptance to reach the standards of the market in the USA.

Currently, as it stands Europe is still behind in Other Countries in the e-learning industry.

E-learning Markets GloballyPredicted Turnover by the year 2018
USA$27 Billion
Middle Eastern$690 Million
Latin America$2.1 Billion
Western Europe$8 Billion
Eastern Europe$1 Billion
India$1.29 Billion

Largest buying Country in Eastern Europe – Russian Federation

Largest buying Country in Western Europe – UK

Final Thoughts

As the global shift transcends, a universal acceptance of e-learning emerges. The European market is mature and ready to embrace the e-learning market, however, the direction of e-learning needs to blend with everyday activities of people. In business terms, the European markets should move away from a pull tactic, towards a more push approach, which means the learning content will be distributed to the end users in smaller bits rather than complete formal learning sessions.

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