Prolonged online teaching periods during pandemic lockdowns prompted a discussion on Educational Technologies (EdTech).

A series of damning reports, published now that some time has passed since pandemic lockdowns, showed that the most popular online teaching platforms have little or even negative impact on children’s learning. Many philanthropists have recognised that the lack of quality in children’s EdTech is not an issue of one platform, but a broader systems problem that hasn’t considered the entire educational technology pathway.

This systems lens on EdTech evidence was introduced by the Jacobs Foundation with their call for a ‘culture shift’ in how EdTech are funded, designed and implemented. Recognising the role funders play in how EdTech is scaled up, the foundation committed $44 million to stimulate greater cooperation between EdTech investors, start-ups, and researchers. The Evidence in EdTech movement, which integrates science with technologies, was strengthened.

Since the rise of the EdTech Evidence movement, foundations have increased their interest and funding in EdTech companies that have a causal, rather than casual, proof that they work. Given that many EdTech producers pursue ‘blended capital’ funding strategies, their evidence-building is funded by both private and philanthropic capital.

Philanthropic organisations looking to make a donation to an EdTech company often wonder about EdTech’s holistic impact on society. The evaluation of different aspects of evidence in EdTech involves considering five types of impact: Efficacy, Effectiveness, Equity, Ethics and Environment.

Read the full article about edtech by Natalia Kucirkova at Alliance Magazine.