NYU Professor Scott Galloway has predicted some of the biggest tech shake ups of this decade – and his next bet is on education.

The pandemic will lead to stronger partnerships between tech and higher education, he has told NY Mag, and dramatically expand hybrid online-offline degrees.

We spoke to some tech experts to find out more. Nick Lim, General Manager, APJ at TIBCO Software explains how Covid-19 and tech will change education forever.

What does COVID-19 say about the future of education?

The Covid-19 crisis has accelerated what would have been a gradual move to a more digital and hybrid educational structure. Schools and universities around the world were suddenly compelled to utilise the available technological tools to facilitate distance education for students across all sectors, and educators started exploring new possibilities to different forms of teaching, resulting in greater flexibility for teachers and accessibility to their students despite the remote setting. This experience with virtual teaching and distance learning has unlocked the future with a digital environment for educational institutions.

While distance learning had been the convenient and recommended alternative in recent months due to the pandemic, remote education cannot totally replace classroom or in-person learning. This is why we developed the TIBCO GatherSmart solution to support the return to school program and ensure the safety of both educators and students. And now with the gradual return of students to physical schools, the option of the hybrid learning model will definitely be available to make education more interactive, innovative, and resilient for educators and their students.

The pandemic situation also created more demand for more skills in the digital workforce, opening more opportunities for careers in data science, advanced analytics, information technology, and engineering. To address this need, students who would graduate to become data scientists and IT professionals need to be equipped with the right skills even before they join the workforce.

If we imagine a future where most education is done remotely, how can nations and universities prepare?

Technology will undoubtedly play a crucial role in the future of education as academic institutions around the world adapt to the changing landscape of teaching and learning. Schools can leverage on technology to overcome the physical limitations to the sectors of students they can reach.

Education can become truly global for any university that will explore the limitless possibilities of technology, which can dissolve distance barriers and provide access to learners wherever they are in the world. Universities need to ride this digital wave to the next era of the educational system because, definitely, the digitisation and globalisation of education is inevitable.

Data analytics plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety and security of both students and educators, whether they conduct virtual classes or attend school in person. For those returning to school, data will help look after the wellbeing of the people coming to the academe.

It will be useful for universities to utilise data-driven technologies such as the TIBCO GatherSmart, which efficiently collects and analyse data to create a single view of an individual’s readiness to return to work and interact with other people. Such technologies will go hand in hand with how education will be moving forward into a new era where people’s safety is of utmost concern.

How do TIBCO’s strengths apply to the education industry?

TIBCO has been supporting educational institutions in various parts of the world by providing training and free use of the company’s advanced analytics software solutions. On our own, we have the TIBCO Academy platform that offers hundreds of self-paced e-learning courses, tutorials, and other assets to help students learn new skills, or advance their current skills, with useful software products and solutions.

We are also actively partnering with institutions of higher education through the TIBCO Academic Alliance, which is aligned with the larger TIBCO4Good initiative, by providing state-of-the-art solutions for use in academic programs and courses.

Through these initiatives, TIBCO not only helps universities in making their programs and courses more attractive and engaging for students, the hands-on trainings using TIBCO’s advanced analytics solutions also help prepare students for their future careers after they graduate.

Through its Academic Alliance Program, TIBCO has partnered with universities across Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Taiwan to prepare students for the IT jobs facing massive shortages across industries. It is also TIBCO’s way of helping academic institutions drive economic growth in their respective countries.

For example, TIBCO’s partnership with Hanoi University in Vietnam and Yuan Ze University in Taiwan are filling the countries’ needs for data scientists and making a powerful contribution to the digital ecosystems.

Most recently, TIBCO announced its collaboration with the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) in Singapore and with Universitas Indonesia (UI), which will provide students with hands-on practice using tools such as the TIBCO Spotfire to give them on-the-job experience in data analytics.

Through this collaboration, TIBCO equips the students of ITE and UI with data analytics skills to meet the emerging demand while ensuring that these would-be graduates will be able to enjoy meaningful and productive careers that meet the country’s critical need for industry-related talents.

How has TIBCO helped universities and schools adapt to disruptions in the past?

TIBCO’s commitment to support academic institutions is not limited to when there are disruptions. It is a continuous effort for TIBCO to help close the talent gap in data management to drive economic development.

TIBCO’s Academic Alliance program has been providing educators and students with free or low-cost access to cutting-edge technology solutions to spark learning and innovation to prepare graduates to become tomorrow’s workforce. TIBCO provides its leading software to help students learn advanced analytics capabilities while at the same time teaching them to apply these skills in a real-world setting.

How is TIBCO innovating to keep up with new requirements?

It has always been TIBCO’s commitment to continuously innovate and improve on our software solutions. In fact, the central theme for the annual TIBCO NOW event in September this year is “Sustainable Innovation” as TIBCO presents how innovation can be made more predictable and how organisations can optimise their operations using the latest technology.

The TIBCO GatherSmart is one example of how TIBCO’s innovation addresses the new requirements brought on by the current situation. It demonstrates how data can be a transformative energy that provides solutions and empowers people and organisations to rise above the challenges of the times.

As TIBCO continues to support the education and training of future data scientists and IT professionals, its commitment to innovation will grow to create better technologies and more meaningful solutions for this generation and the generations to come.