AWS Public Sector Blog

Top 7 EdTech trends in 2022: A startup guide for EdTech entrepreneurs

The education technology industry is rapidly evolving. In 2021, education technology companies (EdTechs) had another record year of investments, mergers and acquisitions, and global expansion. HolonIQ reported nearly $21B in venture investments made through more than 1,500 funding rounds, with firms such as Owl Ventures announcing more than $1B in new EdTech capital. To support new and existing education offerings, EdTechs use Amazon Web Services (AWS) for technical and cloud solutions, as well as education startup industry and go-to-market expertise, to accommodate customers with speed, scale, and accuracy while helping to deliver engaging learning experiences, developing forward-thinking data strategies, and building new revenue streams.

To help early stage EdTechs entering the market navigate this unique point in history, AWS released the 2022 EdTech Startup Guide. The guide describes seven key trends in the EdTech market in 2022, along with market and technology recommendations for those who are developing or scaling their EdTech solutions. We’ve summarized these seven key trends for EdTechs in 2022 below; dive deeper into these trends by downloading the guide.

1. Data is abundant and the key to emerging EdTech solutions

Data is everywhere and more than just structured databases. In fact, according to IDC, it is estimated that 80 percent of data is unstructured in the form of images, documents, geospatial data, and more. We hear from EdTechs that they would like to extract more value from their data but can struggle to capture, store, and analyze the large amount of diverse data they generate. EdTechs must develop a secure and modern data strategy in order to be competitive and effective. This can include building a centralized data lake to store all structure and unstructured data; integrating with third-party data sources like learning management systems (LMS) to develop dashboards and provide analytics to customers; and much more.

2. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) power the latest generation of EdTechs

According to HolonIQ, spend on AI and ML is expected to grow to $6B by 2025. AI and ML enable EdTechs to develop attractive solutions like personalized learning experiences and more. But early stage EdTech startups are not always ready to incorporate these technologies. To address this, EdTechs interested in ML should consider building a strategy for how to incorporate this technology into their solutions and create a plan to develop an initial ML model training framework. For example, this strategy should include understanding how to accurately identify and store their data, how to develop an ML model using the data, and how to train the model before companies can transition their overall solution into an automated service.

3. Game-based learning transforms how students learn

The increase in demand for high quality education utilizing technology has resulted in an increase in the adoption of game-based and gamified education strategies by education organizations. According to 2021 research developed by Technavio, the K12 game-based learning market is set to grow by over $9B USD from 2020 to 2025, progressing at a compound annual growth rate of 20.63 percent, with 37 percent of the market’s growth originating from North America, with the US and Canada being the key markets for K12 game-based learning in the region.

4. EdTechs are at the forefront of digital transformation in the classroom

Digital transformation is the broad term used to describe the shift from analog to digital, the integration of devices and internet connectivity into learning, and the overall digitalization of processes and products to improve the teaching and learning experience. EdTechs are providing solutions, like video conferencing, gamified learning platforms, and in-demand skills training, at the intersection of this transformation. According to an article in Campus Technology, the pandemic has boosted EdTech adoption across all education market segments. The demand for the EdTech market from the institutional segment is driven by the advantages over conventional offline learning models, advanced technological infrastructure, and the extensive reach of innovative learning and training solutions. As a result, this has created opportunities for EdTechs to attract new customers.

5. Workforce upskilling is being supplemented by EdTech solutions

“Half of all employees around the world will need reskilling by 2025—and that number does not include all the people who are currently not in employment,” according to the World Economic Forum and PwC Upskilling for Joint Prosperity report. EdTech startups will play an integral role in upskilling the workforce, providing organizations around the world with digital learning tools for workplace training, personalized learning platforms to help employees and employers track progress, and micro-credentialing programs to help learners demonstrate mastery in particular areas.

6. EdTechs are called to support student well-being

Educators, students, and caregivers use EdTechs to address the long-term impacts of the pandemic. As such, it’s imperative that EdTechs entering the mental wellness space are focused on making sure that student privacy is taken into consideration. As new solutions are developed, regulations such as Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), General Data Production (GDPR), Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) must be addressed when working with sensitive student data.

7. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are top of mind

According to HolonIQ, by 2025 applications of advanced technology in education and learning will become increasingly integrated into core education and delivery learning processes, and spend on AR and VR tools are projected to increase to $12.6B, double the expected spend of AI and ML. As educators, students, and caregivers continue to learn the benefits of gamification and student engagement, AR and VR have emerged as new tools to support curriculums across K12, higher education, and lifelong learning. With these virtual experiences, students are able to take field trips across the globe, exercise their cognitive skills, and engage in immersive learning environments from at home or in the classroom.

Explore more in the full AWS EdTech Startup Guide

This is an exciting time in the EdTech industry, filled with endless opportunities for those looking to launch and transform an education technology company. To learn more about how AWS and AWS EdStart can help your education startup meet these trends and drive innovation forward, download the 2022 AWS EdTech Startup Guide.

AWS is committed to helping entrepreneurs build the next generation of online learning, analytics, and campus management solutions on the AWS Cloud. The global focus of AWS EdStart enables EdTech startups from around the world to move faster by providing AWS Promotional Credit, community engagement, customized trainings, joint marketing opportunities, technical support, and access to the same scalable technology used by established companies.

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