ELearning Market Update – October 2012

Last month Ambient published their latest update on the market for self-paced elearning in Western Europe. We report on the headline findings and whether these might change with the rise of mass online open courses.

The market for self-paced elearning continues to grow in Western Europe, despite many an increase in the use of other forms of learning technologies such as virtual classrooms and social learning. Ambient estimate that whilst the growth rate for Western Europe as a whole was 5.8% there were big variations between countries with large increases in countries such as Romania and flat growth in other countries.

The report notes a number of key trends including:

  • Growth in academic spending on self-paced content
  • Weakening corporate demand though revenues remain high
  • Growing consumer demand
  • A growth in demand for cloud based authoring estimated at 13.6%

The market remains very competitive with over 250 suppliers identified in the report.

Total revenues are significant and are forecast to rise from $6.1bn in 2012 to $8.1bn by 2016. The highest growth rate is for generic, packaged elearning content.

We at Kineo will be very interested to see how this market for self-paced content develops, especially with the rise of large free course libraries. We very much like the work done by companies such as Coursera, a social entrepreneurship company. Coursera partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free.

There has been a noticeable rise in Massive Online Open Courses (MOOC). Coursera is one of those advocating a future where the top universities are educating millions of learners through online technology. With technology the top professors can reach hundreds of thousands of learners not just a privileged few.

These MOOC developments will have an impact on both the corporate and academic worlds; we look forward to the next set of research findings.

By Steve Rayson
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