Two students in the Department of Knowledge Integration, Kerry Smart and Maxwell Brodie recently won awards from the QS/Wharton Reimagine Education competition for their start-up, Kaizena, a software platform allowing teachers to give fast, personal feedback on student assignments.
Smart and Brodie took home the top prize in the Overall Enterprise category, as well as the ICT Tools for Learning and Teaching category.
“Kaizena has revolutionized (or productized as they call it) feedback. The Kaizena system blends teacher and peer feedback, personalizes it, rationalizes it, lowers the burden of providing good feedback for the teacher and heightens the precision of received feedback for the student,” said Nunzio Quacquarelli, CEO of QS Quacquarelli Symonds and founder of Reimagine Education. “Not only that, but it enables both groups to track and analyze the nature of the feedback they are giving and receiving – enabling the teacher to modify their lessons if they find themselves giving too many students the same kind of feedback, and students to more quickly identify development areas. And it’s cool.”
“The Reimagine Eduication award is validation of of our progress to date, and enables us to expand our team, which then moves us even faster towards achieving our mission,” said Brodie. “We want to increase the speed and quality of feedback learners receive on their work: we aspire to reduce the amount of time it takes to get feedback from weeks to minutes.”
The students credit the learning how to collaborate in Knowledge Integration as one of the keys to their success. “The vast majority of existing education systems and practices view collaboration as cheating. Yet, all modern innovation is collaborative. Intentional collaboration underpins nearly all KI courses and learning experiences,” says Brodie. “Dividing responsibilities, conquering conflict, leveraging strengths and running effective meetings were skills we practiced on a daily basis in KI and continue to use on a daily basis at Kaizena.”