Unexpected problems have continually cropped up as online learning apps boomed in the Chinese market. Recently, several online learning apps which were designed to target primary and middle school students have been denounced by parents and teachers for containing improper contents for children. The apps have been deleted from the app store. But a market report shows that many learning apps have the functions of social networking and games which distract teenage users.
In the information age, learning apps are helpful for students to acquire knowledge and broaden their horizons, as a beneficial supplement to the curriculum at schools. With such apps, teachers can conveniently assign homework and check students’ work efficiently and provide instructions if needed. Learning apps can meet the needs of students and improve their learning efficiency with diversified and customized services. But current problems remind the public that learning apps in cyber space can’t become healthy without supervision and regulation.
Undoubtedly, the apps service providers should be responsible for the contents. But currently, it is very easy to develop learning apps without necessary registration and qualification review procedures. Therefore, education and market authorities should strengthen supervision and do their part to ensure the learning apps available in the market are healthy for students. Watchdogs should raise the threshold and stop unqualified service providers from accessing the market. The booming learning apps market needs to cool down.
(This is an edited excerpt of an article published in South Daily on December 19)