New Tools Transform Business Education

The University of Utah business school has used Edmodo in two settings – with MBAs and undergraduates. Rob Wuebker, who teaches entrepreneurship and runs a business incubator call The Foundry, reports that “The application works extremely well in a blended learning setting, especially in classroom environments like mine which are not closed.”
Edmodo, a Learn Capital portfolio company, is a social learning platform–a facebook for schools–that makes it easy for teachers to make and manage assignments, to do it in safe and secure environment, and to share content with other teachers. Used worldwide by teachers from preschool to college, the highest penetration rates are in middle grades.  It is free, simple to use, and has more than 1 million users worldwide.

Rob regularly has advisors, non-registered visitors, non-students attending his classes that makes a traditional LMS a nonstarter.  Rob is a coder by background and has a lot of experience parsing user feedback, so I appreciate this feedback on Edmodo, ” I have never seen such an appreciation for an application.  Both of my classes have requested that I keep their classes ‘alive’ so they can return to them over time–which is an interesting proposition and affords some opportunities to experiment with extended community-building.”

Edmodo users like Rob were excited about the announcement last week that Union Square joined the team.  “I am thrilled because the infusion of cash implies that the arc of improvement that Edmodo is on will accelerate.”

Rob and his collegues are also experimenting with on-demand video so that entrepreneurs in training can learn what they need when they need it while building a company.  Khan Academy, a library of math videos, demonstrates the power of on-demand–it’s the most widely used open learning resource in the world.
We’ve previously featured other social tools on edReformer including GoingOn here and a Q&A with COE John Corson.  Social learning groups will become more important than classrooms as the basic building block of education.  When they get really smart, social platforms will build custom playlists for learners and will connect learners working on similar problems.  Teachers like Rob will make the next few years will be very interesting.

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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