Four Reasons Why Digital Learning Will Surge in 2016

Published January 8, 2016

By Communications Team

Learning science highlights factors behind the ever-growing presence of technology in education.

Today's learners and instructors are more independent and tech-savvy than ever before. At McGraw-Hill, we stay continuously connected with the educational community in order to keep up with the rapid evolution of today's digital learning habits, trends, and preferences.

In 2015, millions of students, educators, and parents used our software, mobile apps, and services. We also surveyed thousands of people from every corner of the educational community. This helps us maintain a constant awareness of how learners and instructors use technology today, and how they expect to impact their academic and professional future.

Our ongoing application of the science of learning in 2015 revealed four trends that we expect to have a significant impact on digital learning and innovation in 2016 and beyond:

1) More instructors and learners than ever are using digital learning tools and platforms. Our robust learning databases fed by billions of student and instructor interactions with adaptive technology are growing rapidly. This includes personalized student tools like ALEKS and LearnSmart as well as instructor-facing and learning management systems including Connect and Engrade.

2) The use of mobile devices for studying is skyrocketing. A survey of college student digital habits we announced in March of 2015 indicated that over 80% of college students have used their mobile devices to study; representing a 40% increase since 2013. The 2015/2016 Digital Study Trends Survey we released in October revealed that 86% of college students feel technology helps them become more effective and efficient at learning, and the vast majority of students want to have access to their own learning analytics.

3) Parents have embraced the idea of personalized learning through technology. From our Back-to-School 2015 Survey of more than 2,500 adults we learned that over 91% of parents feel digital learning should be personalized and about 75% think today's classrooms should focus on adaptive learning. It's our goal to develop products that adapt to students' individual learning styles to provide a deeply personalized learning experience.

4) College students feel using study technology can help them find a job after graduation. Out of nearly 1,000 students who took our 2015 Workforce Readiness Survey, only 20% reported feeling "very prepared" to transition to the workforce. However, 80% said that they believe using technology in college will help improve their employment prospects when they enter the workforce.

At McGraw-Hill we apply learning science to create powerful personalized tools and analytics that strengthen the student-to-teacher connection at the heart of the learning experience.With 2016 underway, we're looking forward to another exciting year of discovery and innovation where the science of learning meets the art of teaching.