George Lucas Educational Foundation

Creating a Best Practice

Creating a Best Practice

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I'm looking for about 200 friends to join me in the Conovate beta to create the most helpful ever platform to save time, improve learning, and differentiate instruction. It's being designed to be free to teachers forever. Learn more at and request an invitation for the beta at

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Whitney Hoffman's picture
Whitney Hoffman
Producer LD Podcast, Digital Media Consultant, Author

Our school district is using Quia for this purpose and the teachers and students are really engaged. How do you see your product as being similar or different to that one? Is there a reason teachers should consider switching?

Lori Niles's picture

Great question! I'm sure that my nominal research into Quia doesn't reflect the same observations you would make as a practiced user, and we are a product in development, so I wouldn't switch yet! But here's what I notice: First, there's a difference in the cost. We are creating a product to be free to teachers and students. Second, analytics. We are designing a platform to give you multi-dimensional analysis of students' cognitive approach to knowledge-based questions. Plus the same dashboard teachers use for tracking student progress will be available to parents, too. Third, design input. We are looking to teachers to help determine the most important features for classroom utility. Fourth, we are designing features that extend beyond measuring content knowledge to give teachers an opportunity to assess affective as well as cognitive engagement with the content. Finally, our intent is to facilitate your ability to prescribe interventions based on the richness of the full web. It's quite possible that Quia's content would be compatible with Conovate rather than competitive. Love to talk with you more about your ideas of what would be helpful to YOU!

Keith Heggart's picture
Keith Heggart
High School Teacher from Sydney, Australia

Hi Lori and Whitney,
At the risk of getting a little bit philosophical, I wanted to ask you both about the way that you see these kinds of tools being implemented in schools. Personally, my experience with Quia left me feeling that it was very much aimed at lower order thinking skills; at my school, I'm trying to really drive a much deeper engagement with learning agenda. I worry that the use of these kinds of tools prevents teachers from developing rich, authentic assessment tasks.

Of course, I'm speaking as a bit of a neophyte here. If you think I've got the wrong end of the stick, I'd love to hear some inspiring stories of how you are using these tools to encourage deep learning through authentic assessment.


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