Friday, December 16, 2016

EdTech Takes Off in an Old Sydney Woolstore

The EduGrowt­h Christmas Party was held Thursday, December 15, in Sydney. EduGrowth is an accelerator network for the education sector. The event was held at the recently opened WeWork Pyrmont co-working space. The keynote speaker was
Adam Brimo,Founder and CEO of OpenLearning. EdTech Takes Off in an Old Sydney Wool-store
EduGrowth is new peak body for the EdTech sector: that is start-up companies selling mostly on-line services and products for education.
WeWork provide co-working office space around the world (mostly the USA), with two locations in Sydney. The new location in Pyrmont is in an old wool store which has been renovated in the classic start-up style, with old wooden beams and ceilings retrained, plus retro style steel fittings. There is an extensive bar provided and some interesting touches, such as "telephone boxes" for making private calls and cafe booths for intimate meetings.

OpenLearning provide an on-line learning system using what they call "social media workflow". The company came to prominence when they arranged with the Malaysian government to provide the platform for Malaysian university on-line courses (with 59 courses so far). 
OpenLearning also have a "Pay for Certification" offering with Hunter TAFE. The idea seems to be you do the courses on-line for free and then pay to receive the formal certification. This is not as radical as it sounds, as the VET sector has previously provided Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). I obtained a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment through Canberra Institute of Technology, with 80% through RPL and the rest some on-line learning and assessment. The OpenLearning/Hunter Cert IV T&A is more than twice the cost I paid for CIT certification.

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