The Servitization of Australian K-12 Educational settings

Year: 2019

Author: Arantes, Janine

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The servitization of K-12 Education is an increasing phenomena across the globe. Servitization sees schools, parents and teachers no longer purchasing a product, such as a textbook, rather subscribing to a service, such as an app or platform that requires ongoing payment or upgrades. With similarities to the rapid ascension and innovation disruption seen with Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) in higher education, many physical products in K-12 settings are currently ‘morphing’ into a service based environment. Approaching the analysis from a post digital perspective, servitisation is seen to be the result of technology that no longer depends on innovation to ascend the market place. Rather apps and platforms are capable of rapid up-scaling by re-configuring their market offering to include subscriptions. There is a notable increase in the use of commercial apps and platforms that require subscriptions as part of Australian K-12 educational practice in recent years, resulting in multiple ongoing subscriptions straining educational budgets. The paper aims to present a new paradigm in Australian schools related to servisitzation, with a focus on big data, algorithms and the associated potential for individual and social implications. This exploration of servitisaiton in K-12 settings also utilizes findings from the ‘Apps in Australian Classrooms’ project, which provides data from 215 online surveys and 23 semi structured interviews of Australian K-12 teachers. Using the shift in higher education seen with MOOCs as a basic model, the paper aims to present how Australian K-12 teachers are currently negotiating servitization and empower them to consider potential implications in relation to equality and any uneven balance of power. Therefore, by arming teachers with this new paradigm, schools, parents and teachers can join the debate regarding the implications of the servitisaiton in K-12 education.