Kaplan, Inc., the global education company and largest subsidiary of the Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC), and Techstars, the global startup accelerator, announced today the 12 education-technology startups selected to participate in the Kaplan EdTech Accelerator, powered by Techstars, their three-month immersive mentorship and business development program beginning today in New York City.
These dozen startups are tackling a broad range of challenges on the K12, higher education, career readiness, and consumer and lifelong learning fronts—from learning how to code or speak a new language, gaining STEM skills or data literacy, and getting into college to providing students with real-world, in-demand career skills, assessing children’s cognitive ability or funding their classrooms, increasing educational travel, and validating edtech’s impact on learning.
Chosen from among 500 applications, the 12 companies (increased from 10 last year) comprise the Accelerator’s second class of startups. Launched in 2013, the program is the first corporate-sponsored accelerator focused exclusively in the edtech sector.
The 2014 class includes:
- Branching Minds (New York, NY): an online tool to help identify, understand, and address students’ cognitive strengths and weaknesses while tracking and reporting data across grade levels, classes, and the home-school divide
- ClassWallet (Miami, FL): digital wallet and e-commerce platform letting donors easily give and track donations to K12 classes and also giving teachers decision-making power over budgets and purchases for their classrooms
- Cognotion (New York, NY): teaches students language and career skills through story-telling, using online video narratives, gamification features, live simulation, and social media tools
- CreatorBox (New York, NY): helps children ages 7-12 years old develop their creativity and practical science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) skills through a monthly series of engaging building projects
- Edvisor.io (New York, NY and Toronto, ON, Canada): increases access to global educational opportunities by seamlessly connecting schools and educational travel agencies via a worldwide distribution system with integrated web tools
- Grockit (New York, NY): online tool using adaptive learning, peer-to-peer learning, and game-like motivational features to help students prepare for standardized exams; originally founded in 2007, Grockit was acquired by Kaplan in July 2013
- Lea(R)n (Raleigh, NC): runs cost-effective pre-clinical and clinical trials to validate emerging education technologies’ impact on learning outcomes
- reKode (Redmond, WA and Reykjavik, Iceland): teaches computer coding skills to children and young adults—including those with learning challenges and disabilities—in a face-to-face environment, emphasizing peer-to-peer learning, positive development, and creativity
- RobotsLAB (San Francisco, CA): creates robots as in-classroom teaching aids that help K12 educators bring to life abstract math and science concepts in fun, engaging ways
- SmartOn (New York, NY and Bangalore, India): teaches “new economy skills” in areas such as coding, data science, social media, and design
- Story To College (New York, NY): offers online and in-person courses that leverage the neuroscience of storytelling to help students write impactful, effective admissions essays
- TuvaLabs (New York, NY): teaches data literacy skills by engaging students through the exploration and use of real data related to students’ own favorite topics and interests