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The Digital Takeover: How the perceptions of educational learning are changing

As the latest Covid variant, Omicron, sweeps through the UK, many schools across the nation are considering moving back to online lessons. Though these measures are precautionary to prevent the spread and tackle staff shortages, there is much discussion about how this shift will affect those sitting GCSE and A-Level exams this year. Exam boards in England have discussed the trial of digitising exams to explore whether virtual assessments are in fact a viable alternative to the traditional exam-taking format. In concurrence with this movement, Education Secretary, Nadhim Zahawi, is welcoming and encouraging the integration of digital learning to everyday school life, showing how the perceptions of teaching as we know it is evolving. But what does this mean for pupils?

Exam season undeniably evokes widespread anxiety amongst adolescents. Previous research from the UK’s leading online tutoring platform, MyTutor, found that 43% agree their child’s self-esteem is linked to the grades they achieved at school and university. This raises the concern of what measures can be put in place to ensure that the mental health of young people sitting exams is protected. With advancements not only benefitting the environment, the exam boards have offered insight into how these digitised exams will be tailored to the ability of the candidate so that their exams results better reflect their ability. Could this new age of learning dilute the amount of anxiety associated with exams and their outcomes?

EdTech platform, MyTutor, saw a huge increase in the amount of students looking for support as home-learning took over the nation. Having conducted nationally representative research the response showed that almost half (48%) of the population used to think tutoring was unnecessary but since the pandemic they now think it’s really valuable. With support offered both in academic and pastoral domains, it is no surprise that online tutoring is growing alongside the integration of virtual school teaching.

Bertie Hubbard, co-founder of MyTutor, discusses the benefits of EdTech and the impact of exam stress on teens:

“EdTech allows us to bring life-changing learning to more kids than ever before. At MyTutor, we provide online tuition that raises kids’ grades, boosts confidence and helps them fulfil their potential in life. Because it’s online, kids get access to amazing tutors from across the country, rather than whoever’s nearby. As there’s no travel for the student or the tutors, it also saves time and money travelling – reducing the cost and stress involved for parents.

Tech also means we can offer high quality learning experiences at a scale not possible offline. Our tutors learn from each other in their online community, and they have access to online training built by teachers. Because they’re subject experts from UK universities, they have recent GCSE and A Level exam experience and up to date curriculum knowledge – perfect for helping teens achieve the best grades they can. Rather than replacing teachers with robots, the biggest power of EdTech lies in enhancing person-to-person learning. With MyTutor, the emotional impact on kids is huge – they love learning from “cool” older role models, and 88% of students experience a boost in their self-confidence as a result”.