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Deal Radar 2008: Grockit

Posted on Monday, Sep 8th 2008

Grockit, which describes its approach as “Learning 2.0”,  is developing tools to harness the power of the Internet to help the world learn. It began by helping students prepare for standardized tests and is now developing a learning game that will allow students from all over the world to teach each other, thereby creating an innovative method for people to learn online. The company calls itself an MMOLG, or massively multiplayer online exam preparation site.

The company is based in San Francisco and has ten employees who handle both technology and content. It was founded in late 2006 by Farbood Nivi, who is now CEO, and Michael Buffington, who is Lead Architect. Nivi has been in the exam preparation industry since 1998. He taught at Kaplan and won ‘Teacher of the Year’ for The Princeton Review in 2002. 

Grockit’s total funding is $10.7 million: $2.3 million in a Series A round led by Benchmark Capital in July 2007 and $8 million in a Series B round from Integral Capital and Benchmark Capital in May 2008.

The beta version of the product is closed, and the company is accepting invitations for the invitation list. According to SayItBetter.com, Grockit works on three fundamental principles of learning: it must be low cost and high quality; it should benefit the student, teacher and society; and it should be engaging and interactive.

I am very interested in educational technologies, especially those that take advantage of the massive viral nature of the Internet. Grockit seems to be one that is going after a large market (test preparation) with the online multiplayer gaming approach, and I am curious to see what they come up with.

Related Readings:

*Dissecting Online Tutoring
* Education & Technology: Now Is the Time – HotChalk CEO Edward Fields
* Vision India 2020: Lucid

This segment is a part in the series : Deal Radar 2008


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Grockit… interesting the influence of Robert Heinlein all these 47 years later… The real challenge of online learning will be whether students can be taught, can learn to think and problem solve creatively and not just by rote, for “test prep.”

Bob Kirk Monday, September 8, 2008 at 1:28 PM PT

I wonder what their site will be like. The other company that’s been in the news a lot in this area is prepme.com – I am a former test prep teacher and read about them working with the state of Maine. I guess they aren’t selling directly to consumers like Grockit?

George Monday, September 8, 2008 at 4:22 PM PT

[…] Games: Where We’ve Been, Where We’re Going *Deal Radar 2008: Grockit *MMOGS – The Parallel […]

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