Seemingly a huge undertaking, Sophia, a new social teaching and learning platform is aiming to vet user collected, organized and created content into well-vetted, reviewed and rated learning objects for consumption by learners around the world. The new venture (which is in private beta) was invested in recently by online education giant Capella Education Company (NASDAQ: CPLA). The investment could be a great way to position Capella as the owner of a next-gen learning management engine which transcends orthodox boundaries in higher education.
Sophia, according to it’s site, seeks to invert the teacher to student ratios seen at colleges around the world in order to provide a plethora of choices for learners to learn in any style they seek. These opportunities are organized in “learning packets” which can be consumed at a learner’s convenience and which are vetted both by content experts on the site (self-appointed) and student users.
What is evident is that Sophia aims to build a content repository based on trust in users to identify the best packets available. An underpinning which focuses on quality of resources rather than quantity.
According to the Capella Education Company press release [link],
The content on the Sophia website is organized by “learning packets,” which are small collections of academic content focused around a specific subject that can be created using text, images, slideshows, video or audio. It will enable educators to supplement their teaching methods with interactive tools to create a customized learning environment on topics across the academic spectrum. Sophia has been called a mashup of Facebook, Wikipedia and YouTube, focused solely on education. It will be free for the general public, and will be made available through licensing for school districts, colleges and corporations for their own internal use.
Check out a demo of Sophia by one of it’s staff members embedded below (direct link: http://vimeo.com/18788798):