Versal Pro Launches; New Advanced Features Empower Teachers and Students to Create Interactive Courses in the Classroom and Beyond
Collaborative online platform energizes in-class group projects and homework assignments, and adds new features for following learner progress, creating private courses and more
15 Jul, 2014, 10:33 ET
SAN FRANCISCO, July 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Versal today announced the release of Versal Pro, expanding the platform's core interactive course creation capabilities to facilitate its use in the classroom. Designed specifically for teachers, Versal Pro adds learner progress tracking, private courses and more.
Since the first beta was launched a year ago, Versal has quickly become a popular way for anyone to create interactive online learning experiences and share knowledge with the world. From student-led projects and homework assignments to semester-length courses, Versal's intuitive interface and customizable drag-and-drop gadgets make it easy to use interactivity to effectively illustrate, and assess mastery of, concepts – no coding required.
Versal Pro ($5/month or $50/year for 200 tracked learners), empowers teachers to create private courses, invite students, and follow their progress as they complete lessons and assessments. It's ideal to experiment with flipping a classroom by creating interactive homework assignments, or by enabling students to take the lead through in-class group projects - learning through discovery and teaching one another in the process.
"Student-led learning is one of the most interesting new ways to use technology in the classroom," said Dave Marshall, former teacher at Marin Academy in San Rafael, Calif. and current education graduate student. "Encouraging students to investigate and learn the tools themselves, collaboratively research topics, and then find the most effective way to present information is significantly more interesting and beneficial than a lecture-only approach."
"I started Versal with a simple idea: make online education accessible to everyone. Beyond removing availability barriers, I'm especially interested in building tools to empower anyone to learn," said Gregor Freund, CEO and co-founder of Versal. "I was not the best student in school. I couldn't sit still. I have always learned best by doing. Online learning today is held back by the lack of interactivity, and even in the classroom it's not always easy to create projects that enable everyone to participate at their own level. We aim to change that for teachers and students alike with Versal Pro."
A new study by Boston Consulting Group released at the end of June highlights the need for new technology to fulfill this vision. "Our survey shows that students across all demographics and backgrounds now want to mix online only, blended, and traditional classroom courses to create a learning experience that combines virtual and traditional settings...We have also found that students desire a much greater level of interactivity than current learning environments often provide."
Versal Pro is open to all teachers, and is available immediately.
Versal is a new publishing platform - free and open to anyone with knowledge and the desire to share it. With the ability to invite anyone to collaborate on a project, Versal is ideal for individual teachers, educational institutions and organizations who want to create traditional courses, product tutorials, training courses and more. Based in San Francisco, Calif., the company introduced its course creator and gadget technology in July 2013. For more information visit versal.com or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.
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