Paving the Way for
a New Teaching & Learning Solution
When I founded ZilLearn at the end of 2018, my motivation was driven by what I’d observed and experienced over the past 20 years in the instructional learning industry. I wanted to achieve a new milestone in teaching and learning. But in order to do that, I needed to overcome three key barriers – I will address what these are later so do read on.
Author: David Yeo, Founder
Before the Pandemic
Until this terrible and disruptive Covid-19 pandemic, education technology has only impacted less than 10% of global learning needs. This is because both learning platforms and building learning content are exceedingly expensive and unnecessarily laborious, or time-consuming, for the majority of us. This includes smaller organizations, non-profits, self-employed coaches and trainers, and those in the developing world.
The development of Learning Management Systems, or LMSs, tend to be administrator-centric rather than being focused on the end-user. This probably explains why many of the most important users – which are the teachers and learners – are using less than five to 10 of the many features in an LMS. Sadly, LMSs are treated as a transactional system for uploading files instead of engaging learners.
There is a need to serve a global user base. However, like a swimming pool, we do not need to just create a hole on the ground, we need to fill it up with water, fast. It is essential that we enable the creation or building of contents for everyone and anyone – FAST.
Traditional e-learning content development would take anywhere between four weeks to three months to build out a course and you would need project managers, instructional designers, multimedia developers, and software developers when required.
With ZilLearn, we put in smart tools that enable amateur creators to become professional creators, to create teaching content at the speed of the internet.
.ZilLearn is built for the everyday person. You do not need extensive skills to know how to create and publish to your classroom or community, or to everyone else. Similarly, access to knowledge is not always easily available. We needed ZilLearn to be accessible to people from everywhere, even when the internet is not available. In the mid-term, users will be able to download content for offline learning. Their course progress can be synced when they have online access again. This will enable learners to learn while on the go or when they are in areas where internet connectivity is limited or really bad.
The barriers of culture, context, language, social and organizational limitations, different student capabilities, and even the way that existing educational materials are being distributed today makes it difficult for us to share and collaborate as a global community.
ZilLearn will launch our unique Adopt/Adapt technology in the summer of 2020 to overcome this problem. This capability is secured by blockchain technology to ensure that the original IP is kept safe.
In essence, ZilLearn will have a space where creators meet creators, so that original content can be adopted or adapted by another creator enabling them to localize the content for language, culture, or context.
Imagine a course that was created by a teacher in the UK that can be adapted by a fellow teacher in Indonesia for her students. She’ll be able to translate the content from English into Bahasa Indonesia, adding local context and examples, and sharing her own version of this content with her students. Subsequently, another teacher in a different state in Indonesia could then use this content and makes it available to his students, and so on and so forth.
This is empowering as this enables any teacher to reach learners far beyond their immediate communities remotely, quickly, easily, affordably.
A Zillion Possibilities
To overcome these roadblocks, I wanted to build a platform that’ll be the new learning networking service. It’ll be one of structured or semi-structured user-generated content that has a wide range of applications, not only to just educators.
It was with this premise that I founded ZilLearn. I created ZilLearn with one clear mission in mind. That every person in the world should be given the opportunity to reach their full potential. It’s an ambitious mission. However, it is one that I believe is the most meaningful.
To do that, we need to create a platform that IS the world’s teaching and learning network.
One that will build a community of teachers, knowledge experts, collaborators, learners, organizations & enterprises onto one technology.
Driving a new way of learning during, and after this global health crisis
Before this global health crisis struck us, classroom walls have already been progressively torn down by the internet. Today, these walls are almost gone. This global pandemic has redefined our teaching and learning experiences overnight – perhaps too fast. It has forced us to rethink our traditional ways.
First, we have to rethink the curriculum to accommodate the shortened attention span of young learners and the role of the student, who are now taking classes online from home. In this context, we have to rethink the role of the teacher as well, from being the transmitter of content to being the facilitator or coach of learning.
Next, we must create new types of content suitable for online learning such as pre-recorded videos, live streams, interactive quizzes, and assignments. These contents must be easy to create, and quick to update.
Finally, education and training institutions are no longer able to operate from their physical locations and new technologies must be tried and adopted to meet the suitability for different learner types.
This global pandemic has shown everyone in the education and training industry just how important technology is.
Post Covid-19, I believe that we will see a surge in the consolidation of learning tools and resources. It presents an opportunity for the community to embark on a new teaching and learning experience that is built on one simple platform.
Earlier, I gave an example of a course created by a teacher in the UK benefiting learners in Indonesia. Today, more than ever, it is possible to create a global community of teachers and learners on a seamless platform that offers an exciting and secure space for knowledge sharing.
At ZilLearn, we aim to break the barriers to education and ensure that everyone – regardless of geography, language, and context – has access to learning. We strongly believe that technology is an integral part of this transformation. By harnessing the power of technology, we can make teaching and learning scalable, accessible, and adaptable to every person.