Emerging Vision for Learning Platforms

There are a handful of conversations swirling around about next generation learning platforms that will combine adaptive/personalized content, assessment, learning communities, with aligned student, teacher, and school services.  The ones that gain wide usage will combine open and proprietary content (e.g., basic and premium cable) with a open app platform (e.g., iPhone).
After an amazing week visiting schools in India I’m back in the states and kick off the week with morning meetings in Boston discussing next gen platforms.  If we build ‘freemium’ platforms with solid free/open functionality and continue to drive down the price point of access devices, we’ll have the foundation for personalized low cost school formats that will extend access to hundreds of millions of students worldwide.
Here’s a compelling description and open ended question from a blended elementary network leader:

“We are working to try and accelerate the rate at which the online curriculum market gets outcomes driven.  As you’ve pointed out, some basic things like building a system that works online and one that incorporates learning objects are good first steps for systems.  One of the things that we believe is that we are likely to see a patchwork of specialty vendors (k-2 reading for example) that we will need to weave together.  This weaving implies a pretty good underlying platform for figuring out the best thing for a student to do.  We are taking our individualized learning plans online in preparation for feeding their goals into a platform like this.  Ideally the platform puts up a lesson against an objective and then post-tests to see if the lesson caused the objective to be mastered.  The system then updates the student’s ilp and builds a success record for that lesson with different students.  Ultimately it optimizes the learning path for kids to master each objective by choosing lessons that work.

Given that, we’ve been out in the market trying to find folks that get this.  The only one we’ve found so far is [a platform] who does this for the test prep market and we will try to convince to do for k-12.  Do you know of others?  Any modification you would suggest in the way we approach the problem?”

Tom Vander Ark

Tom Vander Ark is the CEO of Getting Smart. He has written or co-authored more than 50 books and papers including Getting Smart, Smart Cities, Smart Parents, Better Together, The Power of Place and Difference Making. He served as a public school superintendent and the first Executive Director of Education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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1 Comment

Jan Kuyper Erland

Great website, and thanks to Doug Crets for contacting me. I would like to be added to your blog roll: http://www.memspan.com/blog.html Also find me on LinkedIn! Google my full name to see my innovative R & D work.

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