The New Research Competition That Could Spark an Edtech Revolution

edsurge | October 12, 2019

Another school year has kicked off, and school officials will spend more than $13 billion on technology solutions that claim to work but often fail to generate the desired outcome. The question of whether or not something “works” in the abstract is very different from the question of whether it might work in your district. That’s because education research has historically paid little attention to the sort of implementation variables (such as teacher buy-in, planning time, data interoperability and school culture) that can affect outcomes in the classroom. It’s a dynamic that leads superintendents to repeat an adage that should be familiar to many educators: “a mediocre intervention implemented well is better than a great intervention implemented poorly.” Even the venerable “What Works Clearinghouse,” a division within the U.S. Department of Education that reviews existing research on educational programs, products and practices, offers precious little insight into the myriad ways that technology tools are likely to work—or not—across a range of schools and district contexts.

Spotlight

For eLearning to be effective, the course needs to be based on robust instructional design principles. The design elements used in the course need to support and enhance the learning experience. For instance, if the learning objectives of your eLearning course do nothing to take care of the training needs of learners, then effective eLearning will remain elusive.

Spotlight

For eLearning to be effective, the course needs to be based on robust instructional design principles. The design elements used in the course need to support and enhance the learning experience. For instance, if the learning objectives of your eLearning course do nothing to take care of the training needs of learners, then effective eLearning will remain elusive.

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CORPORATE EDUCATION AND TRAINING

Fullstack Academy Joins AWS Authorized Training Partner Program

Fullstack Academy | September 15, 2022

Fullstack Academy, a national tech education provider, announced today it has joined the Amazon Web Services Authorized Training Partner program. AWS Training Partners (ATP) are the only organizations that can deliver or offer official AWS Training through their AWS Authorized Instructors (AAI). As an ATP, Fullstack Academy will integrate AWS Training and Certification into several of its existing bootcamp programs. Starting in 2022, students enrolled in the Data Analytics Training Accelerator (DATA), a no-cost training program offered in partnership with NYC’s Tech Talent Pipeline, will receive the training needed to earn the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner Certification. The certification validates an individual’s cloud fluency and foundational AWS knowledge, establishing credibility within their organization or qualifying for new career opportunities. Training for this certification will be rolled out to additional Fullstack Academy bootcamps later this year. The organization also plans to offer this training standalone to new students and alumni. Cloud computing skills are in high demand, with 85% of organizations reporting the need for employees with cloud expertise, according to a 2020 report from 451 Research, part of S&P Global Market Intelligence. “Adoption of cloud computing services grew 25% in 2021 alone, and we’re seeing companies using AWS to become more agile, improve scalability and innovate more quickly,For many tech professionals, cloud computing skills are essential to landing a job and advancing their career. By becoming an AWS Authorized Training Partner, Fullstack Academy is better able to support our students and alumni looking to develop the in-demand skills needed to implement cloud solutions.” Jerrad Tausz, CEO of Fullstack Academy. Before Fullstack became an ATP, its students and graduates were seeking AWS Certifications outside of the bootcamp to complement their credentials. As I was preparing for a job search in the information technology field, I wanted to set myself up for success and demonstrate my knowledge of cloud computing to potential employers,said Sean Borry, a Fullstack Academy graduate now working as a Consultant at Deloitte. The technical knowledge and professional confidence I gained as a student at Fullstack Academy, combined with becoming an AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner, played a huge part in me being able to secure a job in the industry. Borry graduated from the Fullstack Academy Cybersecurity Bootcamp in May 2022. “In today’s increasingly cloud-driven world, many of our students and alumni are looking to bolster their cloud expertise with AWS Certifications,” Tausz added. “We’re thrilled to incorporate the training into our offerings.” According to a 2022 report from Enterprise Strategy Group, 83% of learners reported increased job security as a result of AWS Certifications, and 74% reported higher earnings. Employers also report benefitting from AWS Certifications. Among IT leaders that employ staff with AWS certifications, 90% say productivity improved, 89% report faster troubleshooting, and 86% report improved cloud security. Professionals with cloud skills are fundamentally key to helping organizations transform their business and thrive which is why these skills are in such high demand, said Maureen Lonergan, Vice President, AWS Training and Certification. “AWS Training and Certification, along with ATPs like Fullstack Academy, aim to equip the builders of today and tomorrow with the knowledge to tap into the power of the cloud. About Fullstack Academy Fullstack Academy is a national tech education provider based in New York City. Founded in 2012, it offers web development, cybersecurity, data analytics, DevOps, and product management bootcamps. Fullstack Academy also offers the Grace Hopper Program, an immersive software engineering course for women and non-binary students, in addition to partnerships with leading universities nationwide, including Virginia Tech, Caltech CTME, and Louisiana State University. Graduates have been hired by Google, Facebook, Fortune 100 firms, and startups

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EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY

Flywire Announces Acquisition of Cohort Go to Accelerate Growth with International Education Agents

Flywire | July 14, 2022

Today, Flywire Corporation , a global payments enablement and software company, announced that it has completed the acquisition of Cohort Go, an international education payments provider that brings additional students, agents and essential student services to Flywire. The acquisition will build on Flywire’s existing education business to accelerate the growth of its agent focus and team, deepen its commitment to product and payment innovation, and further invest in Asia-Pacific (APAC), a key geographic focus for Flywire. Cohort Go’s core focus is on providing international students with the ability to make cross-border tuition payments through international agents. Cohort Go’s agent platform is expected to bolster Flywire’s existing agent solutions to deliver even greater value to educational institutions, agents, and students. Additionally, with partner relationships in almost 40 geographies, Cohort Go’s global footprint and penetration in APAC and Latin America also present new growth and expansion opportunities for Flywire. “Recruiting agencies play a critical role in the international student journey by assisting students in finding placements in higher educational and other institutions. “Cohort Go has been prominent in this space, with a network of over 1,000 agent partnerships, including some of the most prestigious student recruitment agencies in the world.” Mike Massaro, CEO of Flywire Massaro continued: “As we continue to invest in our Flywire Advantage – the combination of our next-gen payments platform, proprietary global payment network and industry-specific software – we seek opportunities to embed deeper into the workflows of our clients, agents and payers, with the goal of driving more value for them. Cohort Go’s successful agent platform, global footprint and adjacent services complement our existing capabilities and will help us power the higher education ecosystem into the future.” Growth in international student recruitment indicates strong secular trend Recent research suggests that the international education industry is poised for significant growth. According to new data from the market intelligence firm HolonIQ, 8 million international students will be enrolled with foreign higher education institutions by 2030 – 3 million more than were abroad in 2019 – and that their total spending will amount to more than double what it was before the pandemic. As the demand for higher education accelerates, education agents are expected to play a critical role in international recruitment. Estimates from the international education consultancy, ICEF, suggest that more than 1 million students are placed through agents around the world, and rising. According to a 2021 report from the American International Recruitment Council and the National Association for College Admission Counseling, nearly half (49%) of U.S. colleges who responded were partnered with education agents, which is up from 36% of U.S. in 2017-2018. Agent growth is also on the rise in other popular higher education destination markets like Canada, whose international student population has grown sixfold over the past two decades. Cohort Go was founded in 2012 by industry experts Mark Fletcher and Paul Jones, who combined their respective expertise in banking and commercial software to enable students to pay for their international education using their local currency, saving on fees and transfer rates. Grounded in their aligned vision to deliver value to the broader education ecosystems, the founders continually sought ways to work with education agents, institutions and students alike, and evolved their single solution into an online platform that offers a tailored experience, with capabilities to reduce costs, increase choice and improve productivity. Today, Cohort Go partners with more than 1,000 agents globally. Students from more than 180 countries have leveraged Cohort Go, which services more than 60 currencies with local specialists all over the world. The integration of Cohort Go into Flywire’s existing agent platform will enable Flywire to provide even more value to agents, payers, and educational institutions. Combination of software and payments powers future vertical ecosystems Cohort Go’s strong regional focus in APAC, global agent relationships, and its existing payment infrastructure will help Flywire bolster its global payment network. Cohort Go’s relationships with payment partners all over the world will add to Flywire’s network of partners, further supporting Flywire’s clients and payers across all vertical industries. Additionally, the acquisition of Cohort Go also enhances Flywire’s ability to accelerate Flywire’s roadmap to enable a broader suite of financial services targeted to international students and other payers. Already, Cohort Go is improving the way students pay for and save on health insurance, which augments Flywire’s focus on adding more value through its payer services. “Working with our clients on delivering high-stakes, high-value tuition payments, we’ve continued to discover pain points in the education ecosystem that we believe we’re uniquely positioned to solve,” Massaro continued. “Cohort Go gives us an opportunity to accelerate the investment we have been making to further extend our value proposition to international students. With our Flywire Advantage, we can apply our existing framework of using software to drive value in payments to solve very specific use cases.” Complements strong organic growth The acquisition of Cohort Go is a continuation of Flywire’s long-term plan to supplement its strong organic growth and continually expand across all business lines. The acquisition is expected to be modestly accretive to revenue and Adjusted EBITDA. More details will be shared on the upcoming earnings call scheduled for August 9, 2022. About Flywire Flywire is a global payments enablement and software company. We combine our proprietary global payments network, next-gen payments platform and vertical-specific software to deliver the most important and complex payments for our clients and their customers. Flywire leverages its vertical-specific software and payments technology to deeply embed within the existing A/R workflows for its clients across the education, healthcare and travel vertical markets, as well as in key B2B industries. Flywire also integrates with leading ERP systems, such as NetSuite, so organizations can optimize the payment experience for their customers while eliminating operational challenges.

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EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY

University of Technology Sydney Gets Better Support and Security for Oracle Database by Switching to Rimini Street

rimini street | August 24, 2022

Rimini Street, Inc. a global provider of enterprise software products and services, the leading third-party support provider for Oracle and SAP software products and a Salesforce partner, today announced that the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) has switched from Oracle to Rimini Street for improved support and security of its Oracle database and technology platforms. In doing so, the University has slashed wait times for support requests, enjoyed improved service quality and innovative, advanced security to protect its database and application middleware. Rimini Street is also helping the University manage through the ongoing IT skills shortage by reducing the amount of IT labor required for support and instead, allowing resources to focus on the rapid transition to hybrid learning. UTS is one of Australia’s leading universities, with around 45,000 students and 4,000 staff. The IT department employs around 300 staff and is responsible for the digital experiences supporting the people, processes, and culture at the university. The University faced challenges during the pandemic including a massive shift to online learning and remote work, and a growing IT skills shortage. The large decline in the number of international students enrolling in Australia has also seen IT budgets shrink. Because of these limitations, UTS needed to refocus its strategic resources more efficiently. “UTS, like all universities in Australia, has had to rapidly transition to a hybrid learning model that includes classroom and online service delivery. There are many innovations and technologies needed for the transition to hybrid learning; budgets are tightening across the board and the quality-of-service delivery expectations remain the same or higher, “Students can now log into their online classes from almost anywhere in the world which adds a new layer of complexity for the IT team. Fast, reliable, and secure systems are needed to keep up with the changing world and to remain a leading provider in the education market.” Daniel Benad,group vice president and regional general manager,Australia,New Zealand and Oceania,Rimini Street Focusing on the big issues with more time and money to spare Maintaining their Oracle database landscape was draining on the university’s IT budget and internal resources. Support tickets were often slow to be resolved by the software vendor, preventing IT staff from completing other system maintenance and responding quickly to new IT challenges. Staff were preoccupied with keeping databases operating properly in a rapidly scaling up environment and had little time to focus on university initiatives to support growth and innovation. “Skilled staff are only getting more expensive to hire and retaining these employees just to work on support and operational tasks for our enterprise software is no longer sustainable,” said Brian Kelly, Head of IT Operations at UTS. “We’ve had to really maximize the resources we have to keep our IT services growing, improving and meeting the needs of the university.” In addition, as UTS increasingly moved towards a hybrid learning model for its students, and a remote working environment for its staff, cost, capability, supportability, and flexibility were key to guaranteeing robust and reliable IT services. The rapid move into the remote workspace also opened new avenues and risks for cybersecurity attacks and breaches. As the number and location of users increased, so too did opportunities for unauthorized access. As such, the University was conscious it needed to increase the security of its Oracle software, particularly as routine patching was a costly and time-consuming endeavour for its IT team that did not necessarily provide the fastest protection model in the case of a discovered vulnerability. “UTS is relatively new to the hybrid working and learning space, and it’s important to be mindful of risks from such a rapid transformation,” said Kelly. The University began to look at ways to get improved support, better security and reduced operating costs for its Oracle Database landscape while also reducing the resource drain on its IT team. UTS turned to Rimini Street’s enterprise software support and security solutions. Lowering Costs and Response Times Each Rimini Street client benefits from the Company’s flexible, premium-level enterprise software support model, including its industry-leading Service Level Agreement of 10-minute response times for all critical Priority 1 cases. All clients are also assigned a Primary Support Engineer with an average of 20 years’ experience in enterprise software and backed by a team of functional and technical engineers. In addition, Rimini Street’s Database Management Services provide UTS with new expert skills from skilled and responsive engineers. Since partnering with Rimini Street, resolving support tickets is easier and quicker, with expert engineers available to respond to challenges at any time. “Being able to shrink how much time is spent on routine work has really allowed us to prioritise the bigger picture, and Rimini Street gives us time back in our day,” said Kelly. “The team is no longer worried about how long a patch or upgrade will take, how long it’ll take to get issues resolved, or how many hours they’ll have to dedicate to something routine. Rimini Street has taken care of that for us, and having such a quick turnaround for support has really eased up our workload. “Rimini Street gives us high-quality support for these business-as-usual activities without breaking our budget. Being able to be flexible with what senior ICT staff we hire means we’re putting a microscope on what our team actually needs, rather than allowing necessity to dictate it.” Rimini Street Protect - Proactive Security Having the time and resource availability enabled UTS to develop and deploy additional enterprise security enhancements. Further, Rimini Street’s security solutions gave UTS peace of mind that it would be secure and remain live while it implemented the additional security enhancements. “Completed security enhancements include secure identity management and access controls,” said Kelly. “Thanks to Rimini Street, we now have time and budget to spare and we are now looking at developing and deploying additional security measures utilizing a cloud-first strategy. We’re also working on automating service management and migrating to the cloud anything that improves the quality of user experience.” “UTS is yet another example of an institution that has benefited from Rimini Street’s comprehensive and effective database support and security,” said Benad. “As international borders continue to open and students choose Australia as an education destination, UTS’ improved service delivery and flexibility supporting a hybrid education model will play a huge part in improving the student learning experience.” About Rimini Street, Inc. Rimini Street, Inc. (Nasdaq: RMNI), a Russell 2000® Company, is a global provider of enterprise software products and services, the leading third-party support provider for Oracle and SAP software products and a Salesforce partner. The Company offers premium, ultra-responsive and integrated application management and support services that enable enterprise software licensees to save significant costs, free up resources for innovation and achieve better business outcomes. To date, more than 4,200 Fortune 500, Fortune Global 100, midmarket, public sector and other organizations from a broad range of industries have relied on Rimini Street as their trusted application enterprise software products and services provider.

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