1. “Internet Plus Education” is a dominant development trend.

The boom of “Internet Plus” has swept the entire country since 2015. However, the “Internet Plus Education,” which shoulders the task of cultivating talents for China’s manufacturing sector, is still burgeoning. A number of online education platforms and agencies, including Tencent Courses, are making new moves. “Internet Plus Education” not only promotes fair development of educational resources without regional restrictions, but also helps teachers with real strengths leverage their own abilities on a larger platform, and lead the improvement of China’s educational quality.

At present, well-known colleges and universities in China have all established independent MOOC platforms aimed at college students, and have become an inseparable part of teaching. Some colleges and universities have already adopted MOOCs to carry out course instruction for interdisciplinary courses, as well as implemented minors and double degrees. MOOCs will be utilised by colleges and universities as a part of their network of institutes to change their marginal status and enhance teaching.

Though not all courses are suitable for network teaching, “Internet Plus Education” is an emerging development trend today, leading to a greater sharing of resources among degree education online courses, popularising network learning modes, including large-scale online open courses and research systems, such as the accreditation and transfer of credits for network-based learning, and speeding up the reform of higher education services.

2. Continuing education increasingly relies on networks.

In 2014, the State Council released a statement entitled, “State Council Cancels Examination and Approval of Educational Network Based Schools Using the Internet to Implement Distance Higher Degree Education” in its No. 5 File of 2014. In 2015, the State Council published another document, called the “Guidance of the State Council for Positively Promoting “Internet Plus” Actions,” encouraging active exploration of a new educational service supply system.

Time conflicts between work and study has always been a hot topic of discussion and research in continuing education, and is an intertwined and complex paradox. Related policies issued by the central government encourage Internet enterprises and social education institutions to develop digital education resources meeting market demands, as well as provide network-based educational services, further promoting the development of network-based continuing education. Colleges and universities can use digital educational resources and platforms to explore new patterns of network-based continuing education, expand high quality education resources, and promote equal access to education. Colleges and universities can also, through cooperation with Internet-based companies, connect online and offline educational resources, and explore new ways of providing public services, such as basic and vocational education.

3. Formation of an online educational ecology.

The integration of resources and platforms is the development trend of the future. Diversity is a sign of healthy development, and ubiquitous learning will become the mainstream of online education. Relying on Internet-based, advanced technologies such as big data, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence will enhance educational efficiencies. Low-cost means suitable for rapid popularisation will become the standard, and will connect people with educational services through efficient platforms. By these means, an “efficiency first” educational ecology will be formed.

Online educational companies must break from traditional thoughts and systems, and evaluate issues from the current viewpoint of the market, teachers, and students in order to join a wider educational space. This is the only way they will meet society’s demands, and benefit everyone as a result. Online educational platforms will use technology to build higher quality educational content, platforms to solve content and marketing innovation issues, and individualised services to meet user demands for quality content. Rapid iterations will be a core strategy for market dominance. At the same time, the formation of an online educational ecology will also effectively enhance users’ learning efficiency, as well as the content output and operational efficiency of education platforms, help the entire education market grow larger, and drive the industry to develop in a systematic, rapid fashion.

Author: Liu Jia, from the graduate school of Central University of Finance and Economics, doctoral candidate, research assistant

From: Online Education