Best Use of Artificial Intelligence in EdTech

Recognizes the best artificial intelligence, machine or deep learning solution, platform or product that improves learning outcomes and implements solutions that help students succeed.

VirtualAdvisor, CampusLogic - CampusLogic

In 2011, CampusLogic set out to streamline the student financing journey by developing student-centric technology that makes every financial aid interaction easy, mobile, and personalized. By empowering students to navigate financial aid quickly, more efficiently, and with less friction, CampusLogic’s technology helps institutions improve student access, drive informed borrowing decisions and increase student completion in higher education. 

VirtualAdvisor (VA) is the newest member of the CampusLogic platform. VirtualAdvisor enables personalized conversations via seamless integration with a school’s SIS, CRM, or ERP systems. VA provides visibility into advising efforts across departments and allows users to take actions with analytics tied to every step. VA leverages machine learning and AI-driven sentiment analysis to help understand and drive student satisfaction and understands over 60 languages while it does that. Staff can seamlessly tag VA when they need to intervene with a student, transfer them to someone else, or send customized “nudges” that drive the student to completion.

Adaptive - How well does the solution adapt to each user?

Schools can integrate their SIS, CRM, and ERP data to allow VirtualAdvisor to reply with the pertinent, personalized information. Students can authenticate themselves to ask questions that have sensitive data responses. Schools customize the categories to facilitate content ownership and expand the software past just the Financial Aid Department and into other departments across campus. VirtualAdvisor allows students to build their own personal account out, they can load a profile picture, update account information and swap through to all other active products. In short, VirtualAdvisor is the only advising platform that combines AI-driven automation with student data to create student adapted conversations that drive degree completion.

Ease of implementation - what level of training data or annotation (if any) is required by users in order to make the AI perform as needed?

VirtualAdvisor comes delivered with federal financial aid questions, terminology and guidance based on Title IV and Federal Financial Aid prepopulated, right out of the box. This makes implementation a breeze for most financial aid teams. What’s more; other departments can also get up and running quickly by leveraging VirtualAdvisor’s training mechanism. VirtualAdvisor includes a training workflow that allows the institution to identify student inquiries that have no response or a response with a lower confidence score from the AI. The institution can then add or strengthen the scoring through the training workflow that includes a testing harness. Finally, any global content can also be personalized by the institution to match institutional voice, policies, and procedures. All settings, content, AI training and management are available through self-service management interfaces in the product.

Feature set - Does the feature set incorporated within this product appropriately meet the needs of the audience?

CampusLogic’s VirtualAdvisor provides more than just chatbot functionality. VirtualAdvisor is a true advising solution. Combined with our entire Student Financial Success Platform, CampusLogic has tried to uniquely meet the needs of students pursuing higher education. In short, CampusLogic’s VirtualAdvisor is trying to help schools change lives:

  • Personalizes the conversation through seamless integration with your systems 
  • Has visibility into your advising efforts across all departments to take action with analytics tied to every step of the student finance journey
  • Experience the benefits of machine learning through continuous improvement in answer quality and consistency
  • Leverage AI-driven sentiment analysis to help understand student satisfaction with the conversation
  • Seamlessly tag a team with your virtual assistant when students need intervention
  • Remove language barriers with unlimited instant translations to over 60 languages

Innovation – is the product using cutting edge technology, strategies, ideas or features?

VirtualAdvisor is built on Microsoft Azure Platform and leverages cutting-edge technologies. It uses a robust language translation service that has more than 60 languages available (and growing every month). CampusLogic is also using Microsoft’s Cognitive Service for sentiment analysis and intent. VA incorporates an NLP (natural Language Processing) engine to allow students to talk naturally and facilitates appropriate responses from VA.

Learn - How well does the system grow subject matter expertise in your apps/ systems? To what extent does the system get smarter over time? Does the system have the ability to improve itself over time?

VirtualAdvisor allows for a seamless student finance journey when combined with the rest of the CampusLogic platform. The chatbot capability makes the system available 24/7 to respond to student questions. Schools can expand beyond just the financial aid office and use VirtualAdvisor across the entire campus. VirtualAdvisor can alert live agents if something is escalated. Integrations to other systems are possible, which include the retrieval of entire chat transcripts via API or flat files downloads.

Additionally, Proactive Nudging is a capability of VA, allowing schools to send targeted communications to population segment of students loaded in bulk via lists, chosen within the Advisor console, or matched via data shared in integration. This allows VA to guide students into other CampusLogic products, or entire other systems and processes.  There is almost no limit to the capability for VirtualAdvisor to grow with the institution.  

Platform flexibility and accessibility - Is the solution made available through the delivery platforms appropriate to the target audience and use?

VirtualAdvisor is designed to meet students where they are today, by being flexible and easily accessible. Basically, it’s mobile-responsive and accessible anywhere, anytime. VirtualAdvisor is a simple webchat interface that can be added to any website, including mobile sites! It supports SMS and social media channels where a bot can be published.

Additionally, CampusLogic makes every effort to ensure that our software is designed to support the needs of the visually or hearing impaired by designing for the use of a keyboard, providing text equivalents, compatibility with screen readers and we do not override or disrupt any accessibility features of the operating system. 

Proprietary - are the algorithms used developed in-house?

All CampusLogic products are developed in-house. CampusLogic itself was born out the need to simplify and reduce friction in financial aid. VirtualAdvisor is the end-result of nearly four years of feedback from customers on things they need to better-manage the Financial Aid Office and help inform and retain students.

Relevance to a target audience -Does the product effectively solve a specific market need?

Each CampusLogic product is designed to help one different aspect of the student financial journey. CampusLogic’s stated mission is to help schools change lives, and VirtualAdvisor is the latest solution we offer that allows us to do that. VirtualAdvisor is easy, mobile, and personalized for students. This enables students to be more engaged, informed, and drives higher retention and completion rates.  

Usability - can the user quickly and efficiently interact with the product features to achieve their desired result?

VirtualAdvisor’s UI is designed using UI industry standard best practices. Students have described it as intuitive in feedback. The dashboard contains call to action buttons that contain additional hover help text. On the staff side, live conversations, areas where VirtualAdvisor may need more training, new global content that needs to be reviewed, and the number of available of advisor are all easily visible and navigable. Users can even see total Conversation Volume over a given time frame. We designed VirtualAdvisor based on feedback from schools and students, and it is reflected in the look, feel, and usage of our solution.

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  • Teacher's Assistant and Flexi the Student Tutor, CK-12 Foundation - CK-12 Foundation

    Every student deserves a tutor, and every teacher deserves an assistant.

    A tutor can play an important role in the learning journey of any student, but millions of students cannot afford a traditional dedicated tutor.

    An assistant can help teachers to focus on what they do best: teaching. However, millions of teachers all over the world do not have the resources to employ a dedicated assistant.

    As a part of our vision to provide free access to tools that empower students, CK-12's FlexBooks® 2.0 platform is now integrated with Flexi, our AI-powered student tutor, and with our new AI-powered Teaching Assistant.

    For Students:

    • Flexi makes learning a concept (ex: Photosynthesis, Cell Division etc) engaging and provides immediate feedback to help students learn complex topics with real-world applications.
    • Flexi answers students's questions and provides interactive examples to help explain underlying concepts in science.
    • Flexi even checks understanding by asking relevant questions at an appropriate skill level and provides the right amount of help via hints, content recommendations, and reinforcement of foundational concepts.
    • Flexi helps to guide a student through their learning journey with timely reminders of upcoming assignments and unfinished work, as well as topics for further study.
    • Flexi helps students answer questions like: 

              - How am I doing? 
              - How can I improve? 
              - What am I missing? 
              - What assignments do I have? etc

    For Teachers:

    • CK-12's Teacher Assistant helps to improve student learning outcomes by offering clear views of patterns in student skill levels, class level insights of student engagement and progress, and actionable recommendations to close learning gaps.
    • The assistant can update auto-graded CK-12 assignments in a CK-12 class, or directly in a gradebook in Google Classroom, Schoology, and Canvas. Teachers can see class-at-a-glance heatmaps to help find the students who will benefit most from direct intervention.
    • Class Insights can even apply to CK-12's easily-customized FlexBooks® 2.0, allowing teachers to create materials specifically tailored to the needs of their students.
    • The Teacher's Assistant helps answer questions like: 

              - Which students are most or least engaged with their lessons? 
              - Which students have not turned in assignments? 
              - Which students would benefit most from additional attention? etc

    For Authors:
    CK-12’s Flexi provides recommendations to authors on what content is working and what is not for students and teachers.  This allows authors to make targeted improvements to make content better every week / month / semester.
    CK-12’s Flexi helps authors translate content to different languages using machine learning based language translation.

    For Authors:

    • CK-12’s Flexi provides recommendations to authors on what content is working and what is not for students and teachers.  This allows authors to make targeted improvements to make content better every week / month / semester.
    • CK-12’s Flexi helps authors translate content to different languages using machine learning based language translation.

    Leveraging CK-12's vast library of excellent resources, the AI-powered platform behind FlexBooks® 2.0 allows millions of students and teachers all over the world to experience the benefits of a dedicated tutor or assistant to help reach our goal of ensuring that every student has equal access to a great education.

    Please check us out at:

    https://www.ck12.org/pages/student-tutor

    https://www.ck12.org/pages/teacher-assistant

    https://www.ck12.org

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    Video L10N, Powered by HapYak - HapYak

    HapYak, the leading interactive video platform for enterprises, announces Video L10N, the only video engagement platform with comprehensive video accessibility and translation capabilities for the education market. Going far beyond legal accessibility compliance, Video L10N uses the power of artificial intelligence speech-to-text, machine-vision and translation to make the video content itself fully accessible to all students. 

     

    Video is widely recognized as a powerful educational tool and the pandemic has accelerated the transition of schools toward digital content to ensure educators can create equitable and accessible video-based lessons for K-12 students. With the release of Video L10N (pronounced “lion”), powered by HapYak, educators will have fast and inexpensive access to the industry's first fully accessible video engagement platform with built-in interaction and captioning, accessibility and translation capabilities.  Schools and districts will be able to leverage video for inclusive communications that speak to all students and families. 

     

    "During the pandemic, there has been a seismic shift in the use of educational video from supplemental content to core content. As core content, it must not only be engaging and effective but must also be fully accessible to every student, regardless of language or accommodations needed," said Kyle Morton, Founder and Chief Product Officer of HapYak. "These changes will be long lasting and transformational for education. We're excited to bring the power of cloud computing and artificial intelligence to save time for teachers, improve experience for students and lower costs for districts.”

     

    Inclusive Communications for All Students and Families

    In addition to creating video-based classroom materials, Video L10N helps school districts meet Department of Education equity requirements for English learners and for parents and guardians with limited English proficiency, as well as those that struggle with written communications in general. 

     

    Educators also gain a time-saving solution that fully automates the challenging aspects of meeting accessibility requirements for educational video content creation, and provides a tool to support students with disabilities. Video L10N automatically generates video captions and identifies in-video text and interactive elements to enable hearing, vision and motor impairment accessibility devices. 

     

    The Video L10N platform delivers:

    • Time savings – At the push of a button, educators can make their video content fully accessible and translated

    • Cost savings – AI-powered automation software inexpensively translates content into 120+ languages.

    • Accessibility goals – Video L10N ensures that both the video technology and video content achieve and exceed school district accessibility requirements 

    • Equity goals – Video L10N enables schools to meet students and families where they are through the most engaging modality — video — in a way that recognizes their abilities and access points.

     


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  • Amira Learning, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

    At-home reading is made simple and streamlined with Amira’s easy-to-use, cutting-edge technology that allows multiple students at the same time to benefit from their own personal reading coach. It can be demanding and a time-consuming task to schedule and practice reading with students via video conference tools. Amira makes it possible to provide all students with the individualized attention they deserve – in and out of the classroom. As a student reads aloud, Amira listens carefully and accurately. Based on the student’s reading level, the word being read, and the kind of error made, Amira coaches with 25+ micro-interventions to build missing skills and accelerate growth. Each coaching session generates reports on the student’s level of vocabulary, comprehension, phonic awareness, decoding ability, and more. Amira engages each reader with appropriately challenging texts that are connected to their oral reading fluency assessment. During the assessment, Amira notes any errors and screens for dyslexia-risk and alerts the teacher to students who would benefit from additional screening. Support all students in reading mastery with connected assessment and practice, from anywhere.

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