Six of the EDUCATE programme’s companies showcased their products and services at the annual Bookseller conference, FUTUREBOOKLIVE, on November 30, while representatives from four more participated in conference sessions.
The six – Wizenoze, Structural Learning, MyCognition, EvidenceB, Edval and Brands Whisper’g – talked to publishing professionals about their work, and how different platforms can be used to facilitate the accessing of content and information.
Little Bridge and Yoto took part in panel discussions, while Fraim and Get my Grades pitched for funding as part of the PitchEd session, an annual competition for EdTech start-ups. Houtan Froushan, EDUCATE’s programme relationship manager, was one of the four judges.
EDUCATE’s presence at the event – made possible through its delivery partner Besa, and in association with the EdTech Exchange – was a departure from its usual activities, but it was asked to participate following its inaugural appearance at the Bett Show in January, this year, when FUTUREBOOK conference organisers spotted a connection between EdTech and the future of publishing.
In a keynote speech to the conference during the session on Future Learning: The Big Ideas, Professor Rose Luckin, EDUCATE’s director, talked about the need for human intelligence (HI) to work alongside artificial intelligence (AI) in the development of educational technology (EdTech).
She described the many uses and benefits of EdTech to teachers and learners, ranging from the “personal scaffolding” it could provide to an individual student’s learning, to easing the pressures of workload and being able to recognise the symptoms of anxiety in teachers and pupils.
Describing the work of the EDUCATE programme, Professor Luckin said that by the end of next year it will have had an involvement in 25% of all EdTech companies in the UK, many of which were using AI. She stressed the need for “people to work together in developing AI, because it is the only way we will get it right”.
For EDUCATE cohorts it was a unique chance to exhibit and demonstrate their work to a new audience.
Dr. Nukhet Vardar, founder of Brands Whispr’ing, said: “It was a great opportunity to meet with different academic publishers and get a chance to talk about EDUCATE as well as introducing our product to such a wider audience. Many people were impressed by the EDUCATE programme and wanted to find out more about it.”
Natalie Nezhal, media and marketing manager for Edval Education, said: “We’re extremely proud to be part of the EDUCATE programme, helping to lead the way in evidence-informed, research-based EdTech. I thoroughly enjoyed presenting our timetabling solutions at FUTUREBOOK and had some interesting discussions. People were particularly surprised to learn how timetabling can facilitate flexible working and workload reduction for educators.”