新华社:VIPKID引领中国在线教育走向世界
2017-12-07 09:44:52

据新华社英文版《中国焦点》报道,随着“互联网+”和知识经济的兴起,在线教育在中国迎来发展浪潮。一台电脑、一根网线就可以突破地域限制,与千里之外的美国老师沟通学习,这种全新的学习方式受到越来越多人的认可。

5岁的小彭在北京一所幼儿园上中班,每天放学回家后,通过电脑在VIPKID平台与北美老师在线学习英语课程。“美国老师很有趣,我很喜欢他们”,他说。小彭的母亲对记者表示,“这种美式的英语课程对孩子是一种全新的学习体验,不用离开中国便可以与国外老师沟通学习,很适合我的孩子”。

据悉,小彭的学习平台VIPKID是全球最大在线少儿英语品牌,拥有超过两万多名北美教师,为中国20万付费学生提供在线英语学习的机会。VIPKID创始人及CEO米雯娟接受记者采访时透露,中国学校里的英语教学模式与国际上存在明显差异,我们希望改变中国儿童学习英语的方式,为中国儿童提供本土化英语学习机会。

一位在线教育平台的教师对记者称,传统课外辅导班中一个老师会负责30到40名学生,而在线教育的教师通常是一对一授课或者小班授课,在线课程更加方便高效。此外,在线教师上课时要配合语音和丰富的面部表情,这对学生特别是年幼的孩子来说更具有吸引力。

经过几年发展,在线教育已经在中国13亿人中盛行,走进了更多家庭。来自中国互联网络信息中心的数据显示,截至今年6月,中国已经有1.44亿人次接受了在线教育。而汇丰银行今年发布的一项调查表明,76%的中国家长会考虑让自己的子女接受在线大学课程。

米雯娟表示;“随着中国消费水平的提高以及二孩政策的落实,未来中国将有望成为全球最具活力的在线教育市场之一”。

以下是新华社《中国焦点》英文版原文:

China Focus: Online education gains momentum in China

By Xinhua writer Wang Aihua

BEIJING, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) -- Five-year-old Peng Xiaoyi has never met his English teacher in person. While he sits in front of a computer in his home in Beijing, this teacher is thousands of kilometers away in the United States

Peng, who is in his second year of kindergarten in northwest Beijing, takes online English classes after school, which are taught by teachers based in the United States and Canada.

"The American teachers are fun," he said. "I like them a lot."

Even after taking just a handful of classes, he has become more confident in speaking English and developed a habit of preparing and reviewing the lessons, according to his mother Li Juan.

"It is good for him to take American-style classes," said Li, a civil servant. "This is a new experience for him and he doesn't even have to leave China."

Thanks to the development of the Internet across China, online education has become increasingly popular in the country of 1.3 billion people.

VIPKID, the platform that runs Peng's classes, has over 200,000 registered students in China and more than 24,000 teachers in the North American region.

Mi Wenjuan, founder of VIPKID, told Xinhua that she hopes to change the way Chinese children learn English and offer them opportunities to experience native English teaching styles, which are very different to how English is taught in Chinese schools.

"One of the major challenges we have face is parents accepting the concept of online learning," she said. "We have to continuously offer high-level teaching and technical support."

Data from the China Internet Network Information Center showed that 144 million Chinese have undertaken online education as of June this year, 4.8 percent higher than the number by the end of 2016.

"Compared with traditional after school classes, online courses are convenient and efficient," said Li Juan. "They are also less expensive because no venues are needed."

He Tingting, a teacher working for online education platform "Qingqingjiajiao", said an online teacher usually teaches one-on-one or in small groups while traditional after school classes have one teacher for 30 to 40 students.

"Online teachers use powerpoints to assist our teaching," said He. "They are more attractive to students, particularly for younger children."

However, He said online teachers have to work harder to make their voices and facial expressions more engaging in order to hold students' attention. "Reliable Internet connections are also very important to ensure the courses go smoothly."

Online education has become increasingly known to Chinese in recent years, particularly since 2013 when MOOC, short for massive open online courses, entered China in cooperation with universities and websites.

In the last couple of years, capital inflow from investors helped online education firms develop at a faster speed.

A survey issued by HSBC this year showed that 76 percent of Chinese parents would consider online university courses for their children.

"As consumption levels rise and the second-child policy takes effect, China is likely to become one of the world's most dynamic online education markets in the future," said Mi.

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