New "LearnSmart Advantage" suite brings adaptive technology to new aspects of student learning experience; "SmartBook" revolutionizes reading
WHITBY, Canada, Feb. 26, 2013 /CNW/ - Following an introduction at the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, McGraw-Hill Ryerson Higher Education is launching a suite of adaptive learning products for Canadian higher education students that use advanced technological engines to improve learning and student performance. The new "LearnSmart Advantage" suite takes adaptive learning—one of the biggest trends in education in 2012—beyond the realm of course study tools by using adaptive technology to provide more dynamic, personalized learning experiences across new aspects of the student learning experience. Included in the suite is SmartBook™, the world's first-ever adaptive e-book, which revolutionizes reading by focusing students' attention on the content that is most critical to their learning.
Adaptive learning is a method of education that seeks to personalize learning by using sophisticated algorithmic technology to continually assess students' knowledge, skill, and confidence levels, and design targeted study paths based on the resulting data to bolster students' understanding in the areas where they need to improve the most. By allowing students to focus their outside-of-class study time on the topics and concepts that are most challenging to them, adaptive learning has been shown to help students study more efficiently, develop greater proficiency, and earn better grades. Adaptive learning also benefits instructors. By better preparing students for class, adaptive learning enables instructors to spend more time delving into advanced concepts, and engaging students in high-level discussion.
The LearnSmart Advantage suite builds on the success of McGraw-Hill LearnSmart™, the company's industry-leading adaptive study tool. With more than 1 million unique student users answering more than 1 billion questions through LearnSmart since its launch in 2009, McGraw-Hill Ryerson Higher Education has been able to use its unparalleled data and insights into how students learn to refine its adaptive capabilities and apply them to new areas of the learning experience—in effect creating a fully adaptive course. McGraw-Hill Education will make the LearnSmart Advantage suite available to students through instructors and institutions as well as through direct purchase.
"Since the launch of LearnSmart by McGraw-Hill Higher Education in 2009, we've developed a deep understanding of how personalized learning through adaptive technology helps improve student productivity and performance," said Patrick Ferrier, president of McGraw-Hill Ryerson Higher Education. "Leveraging the expertise and proven effectiveness in adaptive learning provided by McGraw-Hill Education in new areas of the learning experience provides an enormous opportunity for students, instructors, and institutions across the country, as well as for McGraw-Hill Ryerson. With the launch of the LearnSmart Advantage suite, we continue to lead the industry in the use of adaptive technology to help improve student productivity and performance."
The following new products are joining LearnSmart in the LearnSmart Advantage suite:
- SmartBook—an adaptive e-book that creates a more efficient and effective reading experience by assessing students' knowledge and skill levels as they read, and highlighting content that focuses their attention on the topics and concepts that they have yet to master. SmartBook represents a breakthrough achievement in reading, as it breaks the centuries-old tradition of books as linear experiences that presume to be read in their entirety, and in a pre-defined sequence, in order to be understood.
- LearnSmart Prep—a "before-the-course" adaptive resource designed to prepare students entering complex courses that are critical to the completion of their major or degree (such as Anatomy & Physiology, Organic Chemistry, or Majors Biology) with the knowledge and skills they need to be successful on day one of class. Students can also use LearnSmart Prep in the early weeks of a course to ensure that they are prepared for concepts and assignments that will come later.
- LearnSmart Labs—a photo-realistic virtual lab experience that uses adaptive technology to enable meaningful scientific exploration and learning while eliminating many of the practical challenges of a physical lab setting. By allowing students to practice their experiments in a virtual lab setting, LearnSmart Labs allows students and instructors to maximize the valuable time spent in the physical laboratory. For online and blended courses, LearnSmart Labs offers the closest thing available to an actual physical laboratory experience, enabling students to put the concepts they have learned in class to the virtual test without requiring access to a brick-and-mortar lab.
- LearnSmart Achieve—a comprehensive adaptive learning system that pinpoints students' areas of weakness and supplies students with targeted content, including videos, interactive activities, and additional readings. LearnSmart Achieve gives students on-the-spot tutoring at times when they may not have access to their professors, and provides a time-management feature that guides students through the content and resources at a pace that is best for them.
The LearnSmart Advantage suite enables institutions to adopt adaptive learning as an institution-wide practice, creating a cycle of student performance improvement across disciplines and classes. McGraw-Hill Ryerson Higher Education also plans to offer selected products in the LearnSmart Advantage suite available to students to purchase directly. The company entered the consumer market for adaptive technology in the summer of 2012 when it made LearnSmart for sale directly to students and parents.
LearnSmart Advantage Availability
- LearnSmart: Available immediately across more than 90 course areas.
- SmartBook: Available through spring and summer 2013 across more than 90 course areas.
- LearnSmart Prep: Available immediately across six course areas.
- LearnSmart Labs: Available immediately for the following courses: Majors Biology, General Chemistry, Anatomy & Physiology, Microbiology, Organic Chemistry, and Nutrition.
- LearnSmart Achieve: Available in beta in the spring of 2013 across more than 25 course areas.
Products in the LearnSmart Advantage suite will be available directly to students from the Canadian website, www.mhelearnsmart.ca.
About McGraw-Hill Ryerson
McGraw-Hill Ryerson is a content, software, and services-based education company that draws on more than 100 years of educational expertise to offer solutions that improve learning for Canadian students and professionals. We are committed to providing Canadians with material of the highest quality for their education, enjoyment, and professional development. Our strength and success in the marketplace is a testimony to the quality of our products and the creative and innovative means we use to introduce new resources to our customers. We publish and distribute educational and professional materials in both print and digital formats. For additional information, visit http://www.mcgrawhill.ca.
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