EduTok: Could TikTok Become the New Online Educational Platform?

Published June 24th, 2020 - 03:00 GMT
EduTok: Could TikTok Become the New Online Educational Platform?
TikTok has earned a reputation of being the teenage platform for dancing and funny videos. (Albawaba: Rami Khoury)

For about a year now, TikTok has earned a reputation of being the teenage platform for dancing and funny videos, ones the youth create to make fun of the real rigid world of parents and teachers. Yet, the app is about to consolidate the two worlds and we only wonder: will it be a smooth transition?

Movement disruptions due to the pandemic have inspired many people to make changes in terms of lifestyle and communication means. For the last three months, the world has witnessed a very sudden transformation to online education.

Educators and teachers are hoping to make classes more fun and exciting for their stranded TikTok loving students. Last April, a group of math teachers went viral using less than a minute SAT tips. According to Business Insider, math tips videos were shared millions of times across the platform, pointing to an unexpected students' interest in academic content.

Even though the idea of providing the video-sharing platform with educational content appeared several months before the Coronavirus outbreak, it seems that the overwhelming success of educational content has inspired more serious plans; the company has announced recently.

Last January, an article published by the Commonwealth of Learning used the term EduTok, referring to TikTok's interest in creating learning content in partnership with educational institutes. The hashtag #edutok has provided TikTok with more than 116.9B views so far, as users continue to innovate short videos with tips on various topics.

Launched by ByteDance in 2017, the app which has been downloaded over 2B times witnessed an extraordinary boom during international lockdowns that started in March.

Looking into diversifying its audience base beyond young people, the application is considering several options to portray itself as more than an app teenagers use to "waste time" away from parents' supervision.

TikTok's recent interest in providing professional, yet modern educational content can help the application win a higher approval rate across the different age groups, which will in turn boost efforts to make it one of the top used social media apps worldwide.

Considering that today's young people don't mind learning as long as the information is presented in a visually appealing, fun setting that doesn't require more than a maximum of one minute, TikTok educational videos can actually be a new hit. This  could accelerate competition with other social media networks, especially YouTube, where educational content has been, for long, of any length and format.


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