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Boons and banes of Cloud for EdTech

Author:

Hamish Lister

Senior Content Manager

Hamish is a senior content manager at Ostride Labs. Hamish’s diverse background in technical research, analysis and market demand are the main drivers behind the topics he enjoys exploring and writing about.

Boons and banes of Cloud for EdTech

Updated 23 Jun 2022

Cloud-based systems are more vital than ever before, with the recent drive for online courses, digital lesson plans, and remote learning. Adopting cloud-based EdTech solutions saves money while allowing IT professionals to focus on more vital tasks. Cloud computing has enormous educational benefits for students in high schools and universities, but it also comes with some drawbacks that need consideration. 

 

What is EdTech?

Education technology is a subset of technology used to promote and provide access to education. This can include hardware, software, and other related products that educators and students use in the classroom. These tools assist students in attending classes, collaborating, engaging with remote students, or learning in a new way, whether inside or outside of the classroom. Education technology is often referred to as EdTech.

 

Role of Cloud in EdTech

Cloud computing has progressed far beyond traditional internet data storage. It has provided us with the benefit of decentralized sharing. It’s a simple method that takes very little human effort. Education in the twenty-first century must be fueled by the most cutting-edge technologies. Bringing education out of the classroom and taking it to our homes or business is the fundamental goal of incorporating digitization into the learning process. Technology in education has advanced to a new level, making distance learning and higher education more convenient and accessible.

 

5 Boons of cloud computing

 

Here’s a quick review of the five primary pros of cloud computing in education to help you decide if cloud education solutions are right for your establishment.

  1. Cost Savings in the Long Run

One of the most significant advantages of cloud education software is cost savings. Cloud migration, as opposed to managing an on-premise data center, helps to support an IT ecosystem. It achieves this by aiding firms in moving from capital expenditures to monthly operating expenses that are predictable. Institutions benefit from regular monthly expenses in various ways, including:


– Data storage costs are reduced.
– Data center maintenance is kept to a minimum.
– Replacement of aged physical IT hardware costs less money.


This is a low-cost solution to improving your study environment and expanding your educational options.

  1. Improved Collaboration

In cloud computing education, the necessity of real-time collaboration cannot be stressed. Cloud computing software makes it possible to:


– Encourage student interaction.
– Create management portals for teachers.
– Facilitate virtual classrooms for powerful remote learning.


In education, cloud management opens up a slew of new collaboration opportunities. It’s the most straightforward approach to ensure that educators, kids, and parents are all on the same page.

  1. Availability of Resources and Ease of Access

Physical and digital access to materials is also improved via a cloud-based education platform. It allows students to access the same materials and learning tools independent of the devices or web browsers they are using. Virtual solutions, such as cloud computing, also provide students with continual learning possibilities. They’re frequently used to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) is a set of guidelines for improving the accessibility of web-based content for individuals with disabilities and across mobile platforms. Students with mobility difficulties or learning disabilities can obtain individualized instructional packages that adequately address their needs thanks to WCAG-compliant online learning.

  1. Scalability

Cloud-based software helps to reduce costs associated with facility growth when compared to scaling on-premise data centers. Your cloud system can grow with you, no matter how many students you have or how many higher education facilities you administer.

  1. Modernizing Learning Environments

The best way to prepare educational institutions for the future is to use solutions such as Blackboard and Udemy, for example, two of the most well known EdTech cloud solutions for education. These technologies increase the appeal of your school to prospective students while also allowing you to provide a higher level of instruction.

 

Banes of cloud computing

 

While the benefits are considerable, it is also important to note the drawbacks when utilizing cloud computing in education.

  1. Internet Service Provider Dependence

Cloud computing’s reliance on internet access is an unwelcome reality in education. Online learning may be hampered by internet service provider problems or limited bandwidth, as opposed to traditional classrooms.


Working with a managed service provider might help you rapidly figure out whether the problem is caused by the end-user or the cloud provider. After that, a solution can be put in place to give you better access and connectivity.

  1. Less Control

Although access to services and platforms in the education sector (such as Blackboard) is a benefit of the cloud, the fear is that you have less control over upgrades, training, and other features.


The infrastructure is handled by the cloud service provider and abstracted from your in-house team because the solution is delivered “as a service.”


You’ll have less control over the infrastructure and system setup because everything is hosted off-site. These are handled by your cloud service provider.

  1. Commitment to Vendors

Higher education cloud solutions rely on the services of a single vendor. It is uncommon to be able to swap service providers.


Working with an MSP can assist you in selecting the best provider for your requirements. Choosing the correct supplier for moving educational workloads to the cloud is crucial.


A reputable supplier pays attention to you, understands your risk, and handles it from start to finish, avoiding any potential problems.


After you sign a contract with a provider, you will most likely be locked into a service contract with them. Most providers, on the other hand, will let you out of a contract but will charge you a penalty if you break it early. If you’re happy with your services, this may not be a problem, but it is if you’re not.

  1. Security

When properly set up, cloud-based education technology is secure, but there are inherent security vulnerabilities when all assets are hosted online. Data security becomes a growing problem when cloud systems that aren’t adequately secured become vulnerable to hackers.


When consumers access resources from many devices, this risk grows. If a device with remembered credentials is stolen, an unauthorized user can access the cloud platform.


To avoid these problems, you must prioritize security. This starts with a properly configured cloud infrastructure and training all users on cloud security best practices.


Consideration of MDM management or multi-factor authentication from an MSP, for example, would alleviate many security problems. This would also provide additional protection against end-user device flaws.

  1. Up-Front Costs

While one of the key advantages of cloud computing in education is cost reduction, there are certain upfront fees.


Depending on how many applications or services you’re migrating to the cloud, the migration could be costly. There’s also a cost in terms of time spent training employees on the new system and security best practices.


The majority of the savings come from long-term reductions in operational IT expenditures, but administrators must be prepared for the long-term savings.

 

Conclusion

Administrators should assess the benefits against their needs to determine which solutions will produce the best results for their educational settings.
Cloud computing and education are unmistakably linked, as long as you have the proper integration partner on your side.

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