In the modern world where many of our day-to-day products come from all four corners of the world, a tough, yet fair question to ask is “Is it possible to have a quality product at low cost with an ethical footprint?”
Of course, this question is also valid for Education, especially these days as the game is changing very quickly with the rise in digitalization and online learning; nowadays anyone can develop materials and teach them from anywhere, which begs the question:
The cost may be low, but what about the human process behind it and the real quality?
I don’t know that we can make sweeping generalizations, but I do know that our industry is changing fast and the way and where teachers work is changing quickly too. With so much movement, it’s important to stop and take a real look at the human impact to these changes. For what it’s worth, I’m proud that our little team at Edulang is excelling beyond what many other players in the game have been or are doing as far as quality and ethics goes. And to that end, I’d like to share just a bit more of how I see it here.
1) LOW COST
Our clients pay what they want and can have a year of English learning at one dollar. The only thing lower is free, and really, as the expression goes “nothing’s free in life”.
Lowering the cost of our applications to a minimum of a dollar makes them available to everyone.
Above that amount, each person is able to add a contribution depending on how they value the fruits of our labor and fifty percent of that goes to Room to Read.
We pay our authors well. Our team internally is well compensated too, and no, we’re not outsourcing development as some actors do.
HOW IS THIS ALL POSSIBLE?
We want to change the rules of the game. We feel that elearning can be inexpensive for many and don’t think it’s anywhere near comparable to the hourly wage of a trained teacher (though others in the industry seem to think so and want to charge so).
We are courageous. Our team has often taken a step out on the limb because we know that we have to as a small publisher. Taking risk also gives us great opportunities.
There are 500 million English learners out there and most of them have access to the internet and a $1 barrier is within the reach of all. Thanks to the magic of the cloud, it doesn’t cost us an extreme amount more to serve 10,000 clients or 1 million, so our costs of developing quality materials remains the same whether we have 10,000 or 1,000,000 clients.
By changing the game, by democratizing online learning, we have the possibility to make a real impact and that, above all, is what drives our team. I must say it’s a nice direction to be involved in.