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In conversation with BESA

BESA's Cleo Fatoorehchi speaks to CENTURY Tech about AI and learning personalisation

Posted by Julian Owen | June 26, 2018 | Business

Why was it important to base CENTURY Tech on AI and machine learning? How does it help improve children’s educational/academic outcomes?

We know that personalisation and differentiation can help improve outcomes for learners. We also know that this is hugely time-consuming for educators. Further, we know that educators are already overwhelmed with workload and there is zero bandwidth to add additional tasks to the list.

With these problems in mind, Priya Lakhani conducted comprehensive research into education and tech. After completing a Stanford University artificial intelligence course, Priya Lakhani realised that there was real potential to use the same advanced technologies that have revolutionised other industries (such as medical diagnosis, national security, finance, retail and entertainment) to education, which is so often left behind.

CENTURY’s platform delivers education that adapts to each student. In order to do this, CENTURY gathers data on students via their interactions with the platform: every click, every score, every interaction is tracked. This data feeds into machine learning algorithms that learn how each individual student learns. The algorithms plot the most effective route through the curricula to create an individual recommended path for each student, to ensure that all children are supported in their learning. Gaps in foundational knowledge are quickly identified and remedied, weaknesses are scaffolded, and strengths built upon. Rather than a student having to wait weeks for work to be collected, marked and returned for misunderstandings to be addressed, CENTURY can intervene at the point of need. The result is a learning journey as unique as each student, carefully crafted to recommend the most useful topic at exactly the right time.

Priya Lakhani

Do you provide any training to the teachers, to ensure they get the best of CENTURY Tech? 

CENTURY is committed to providing comprehensive training to teachers and students, so that they are confident using the platform. We offer these in whatever format most suits the school: twilight sessions, webinar, during the day, in-class sessions and assemblies are all available.

The sessions include training on how to use data in flexible lesson planning, flipped and blended learning, and general tech usage in the classroom. Our training sessions are also all CPD-accredited, which is a nice bonus.

CENTURY Tech was involved in one of the first cohorts of the EDUCATE programme, which helps build an evidence base of edtech. How useful has it been for the company?

CENTURY has always been committed to having a robust evidence base to our product, which made being part of EDUCATE a natural fit for us. The programme has provided us with the means to formalise this research, and has provided expert resource to shape the investigations we are doing. We would highly recommend that other edtech companies get involved: understanding how to structure and execute internal research, knowing where to look for rigorous research as a basis to the product, and building connections with academics and schools to trial and research their product. 

CENTURY Tech: www.century.tech; BESA: besa.org.uk

 

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