Accelerating the change in the education industry
This article was originally published in the April 2019 edition of The Technology Headlines and has been edited for clarity.
The education industry has changed for the better. Breaking away from its traditional way of operating, it has embraced new technologies for better functioning—thanks to the education technology solution providers that have brought about new innovations into the industry.
Today’s students are not new to the classrooms that are packed with technologies such as tablet computers, wide screen televisions, and interactive whiteboards. But the paradigm shift that everybody is talking about is not the integration of technology into classrooms, it’s the rise in the acceptance of online courses among students and parents over the past few years.
While technology adoptions in classrooms made learning an interesting and engaging experience, the proliferation of online courses could help students from across the world to have access to quality education from anywhere and at any time. All these are advocating the fact that technology is increasingly eliminating the barriers that hinder the industry from providing quality education to all. Today, hundreds and thousands of students get access to quality education via internet. And that is not a small feat.
ASSIST Education, an education technology solution provider, is one company that is accelerating this ongoing change in the education industry by providing an Integrated Education Management System. Developed by a team of educational practitioners, the company’s Integrated Education Management System enables educational institutions to securely manage their administrative needs, including student information, curriculum management and learning management. Also, the company’s Integrated Education Management System manages all three applications such as LMS, SIS, and CMS applications in one, single platform.
ASSIST started its journey as an online school in 2007 with the vision of providing quality educations to students across the world. During the initial stages of the journey, the company was supporting schools by providing student information management features, learning management features, and content hosting and content management services. Overtime, as the company grew and adopted new partners, it developed new features to meet their growing needs.
And indeed, there are certain factors that have helped them to embrace this change nimbly, unlike its counterparts. One among them is the management’s idea to bootstrap ASSIST. This decision helped ASSIST be free from other debts and had given the freedom to set the direction of its future in its own right: the company could purposefully and intentionally build each feature that meets the needs of institutions and its partners.
Today, the company offers a wide array of educational models and deliverable programs (innovative school models) that empower the education industry at large. While its deliverable programs empower institutions with the ability to deploy various school models effectively, its educational models complement its vision of providing education for all.
“Our innovative school models relieve coordination between multiple platforms, reduce school expenses for paying for multiple platforms and ease the teacher’s burden giving them more time to teach and work with students,” explains Michael Spencer, CEO, ASSIST.
In addition to these benefits, schools can also purchase content from its prequalified content providers to expand their own academic offerings or add programs adding to their own revenue streams. “As our online content is built in accordance with the industry’s standards, teacher planning is greatly reduced allowing them to spend more time with students,” affirms Spencer.
Placing Institutions at the Center
ASSIST was built to help educational institutions run their schools effectively and efficiently. But at the same time, the management at ASSIST wanted its platform to be affordable and accessible to other academic institutions. “We wanted to provide our Integrated Education Management System as a tool that would change the way school management, staff and course management could be conducted in a more streamlined way. And we did not distinguish between SIS, LMS and content management features since we knew we needed all of them,” elucidates Spencer.
Academic institutions get a wide array of benefits using ASSIST’s Integrated Education Management System. The company’s single system gives accessibility to tools, which otherwise need to be obtained using multiple systems. In addition, “we let other institutions offer courses for credit, expand into other grade levels and offer more to students with the addition of an online component to their existing programs,” adds Spencer. And that’s not all.
ASSIST allows schools to offer anything and everything to students. This drives a student-centric approach that improves student retention and outcomes. Moreover, as an advocator of technology, the company intends to adopt new technologies including AR/VR and MR, or any other specific courses, which students want to take or a school wants to offer to their student population.
Although the company has introduced a host of new programs and features into the industry, that doesn’t stop the team at ASSIST from constantly improving its existing components and features. This indicates ASSIST’s unwavering commitment to the education industry. And that commitment has been the reason why ASSIST added more features to its product roadmap to support both the U. S’ client base and its international client base.
One such prominent feature is Blended Learning. The key purpose of Blended Learning is to address the requirements and needs of international customers. But to do that, the company had to incorporate in-country requirements and also had to blend-in with the localized presence and meet their very specific requirements.
Embracing this challenge, the team at ASSIST added components into is platform that addresses the needs of students and parents that vary from region to region and country to country. Reflecting back on that experience, Spencer says, “We have also integrated translation software so that admin and parents can work in ASSIST in their native language and have also incorporated frameworks for experiential learning and ‘in-class’ traditional environments.”
Toward a Better Future
The future of the company looks very promising. Going forward, the company intends to incorporate strategic channel partnerships and reseller distributors worldwide. Regarding the expansion, the company intends to have a global presence and become the industry standard for delivering online and blended learning content.