Online learning redefined

As top-tier university lecturers and startup innovators, David Shrier and Beth Porter are highly regarded in the edtech world. Their present ambition is to reinvent online learning by combining cognitive science with sophisticated technologies, as Tech For Good found out

“As I’ve gone through my career and created new and more evolved software-engineered solutions for learning, what I’ve found is that people really make poor use of technology”

The pair’s vehicle for driving change in education is Esme Learning. Co-founded as a means to synthesise their knowledge in teaching and technology, Esme is working with some of the world’s foremost universities to reinvent remote learning classes using the tools available through the Riff Analytics platform.

“We very much would like to change the world, but we’re not arrogant enough to think we can do it just by ourselves. What we know we can do by ourselves, in our startups, is come up with cutting-edge ideas and then validate that they work at scale”

For Shrier right now, this isn’t about one method being better than the other — it’s about a service that is “differently good” to the other. Though he doesn’t hide his ambition to take online learning even further.

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