The Silicon Review
“The Achiever program uses cloud technology to make real-time reporting across multiple schools in districts with thousands of students possible.”
The term educational technology (EduTech) is used for both software and physical hardware that facilitates learning by managing appropriate resources and processes. The term also covers a wide array of aspects like m-learning, computer-based learning, and online learning. Multiple evidence-based plans are concurrently deployed to test the effectiveness of the technology. Educational technology can individualize instruction for students and create a learning plan for them to study at their own pace. Modern edutech is making education accessible to all and it also includes several full degree programs. This field might seem like a specialized niche but its implication is far-reaching and has a lot of potential. For tech professionals, this means a growing and ongoing need for development in the area that is able to scale as evolving devices and technology multiply avenues for information delivery.
At the risk of over-evangelizing the importance of Education Technology, it can be said that the successful development of these tools will impact every aspect of our future. Accessible, effective solutions for superior education empower students and teachers to focus on the task of learning. They can do more with the resources they have, improving the quality of education available to young people around the globe and better-equipping them for the future and Brainchild is one such company that is a pioneer in personalized learning movement. It was founded in 1995 in Naples, Florida when CEO Jeff Cameron invented portable, interactive learning device known as ‘Study Buddy’ to help students study for standardized tests. Since then, schools have purchased over $30 million of Brainchild’s personalized learning devices. The company’s slogan, “Study Better, Score Higher” describes Brainchild’s mission of helping students take charge of and learn to be responsible for their education.
Scenario of EdTech
In 2001, Congress approved the ‘No Child Left Behind Act’, which required states to develop academic standards and hold schools accountable for using annual high stakes tests. Brainchild expanded its product line with online assessment and instruction subscriptions. Since standards vary from state to state, Brainchild’s Achiever standards mastery product is customized to each state’s standards. A variety of real-time progress reports at student, classroom, school, and district levels help educators plan individual and group instruction tailored to each group’s needs and preferences.
Impact of Cloud Technology
In 2015, the ESSA, ‘Every Student Succeeds Act’, was signed into law. It required much more extensive reporting and data analytics for schools and school districts, measuring not just student performance but also many metrics for teacher and school administrator performances. The Achiever program uses cloud technology to make real-time reporting across multiple schools in districts with thousands of students possible.
Success of Services
Numerous research studies on Brainchild’s mobile and desktop platforms have been completed by a third party, academic institutions, and user groups. One such study – the New Jersey College of Education used control and experimental groups to show that when Brainchild products were added to conventional instruction, at-risk student populations showed 30 perfect growth compared to six percent without Brainchild. The studies indicate that Brainchild’s products close achievement gaps and support substantially higher student achievement. Studies also suggest that ease of use and individualized feedback are key ingredients of that success. Brainchild’s education technologies have been deployed in over 5,000 school districts including all 67 school districts in Florida and more than 10,000 schools across the nation.
A chronic problem with online assessment and instruction products is lack of usage. Teachers are very busy people who live by the clock. They have 45 minutes to an hour for each class before the next class starts, and perhaps a planning period. Therefore, Brainchild’s products are built in a way that even with the least teacher involvement or no teacher involvement, they can benefit. Students can self-direct themselves through the program, or teachers can make assignments to match their district or school’s pacing guide. A personal learning plan is created for each student as they choose the lessons or standards they must work on. The teacher dashboard offers a student view to see what the student will see. Teachers can also attach their computer to a projector and use the Achiever program for group instruction. All controls and reports are a point-and-click operation that has been proven to be intuitive for teachers. Brainchild provides initial free training and refresher training free of charge over the internet. Most teachers just need 15 minutes of guidance to be comfortable with the program.
Artificial Intelligence Considerations
Currently, Brainchild is at the forefront of artificial intelligence in education, automating the process of providing data-driven, individualized instruction customized to the needs of each learner. Adaptive considerations are being added to Brainchild’s award-winning formative assessment platform. Academic “foundational skills” and prescriptive learning paths are prescribed automatically for each academic state standard in English and Spanish. Artificial intelligence systems respond to the needs of the student, as a teacher would, putting greater emphasis on certain topics, repeating things that students haven’t mastered, and generally helping students to work at their own pace, whatever that may be.