High Impact Teachers, an Australia-based education consultancy firm approached us to develop a software for their teachers to introduce evidence-based rules behind creating rubrics. This helped them analyse charts in Excel, and get the work done through automation.
They already had a professional development course approved by the Education Authority in New South Wales. Therefore, they were able to deliver this five-hour course to teachers, school leaders, and school principals. This course is basically a springboard for the software which introduces teachers to the use of rubrics.
So we had to develop a software that was simple to use yet efficient. That's when Zone Finder came into the scene. Zone Finder could make it easy to provide software access for teachers & school leaders to determine where students are in their learning and the next steps in their learning.
In our conversation with Omar, the Founder of High Impact Teachers, he highlighted a few pointers that needed to be addressed:
After our discussion with Omar, we tailor-made this software that can easily be used as a marking system for schools/teachers. This can also be used to identify zones of actual development and skills for the growth of a particular student or the entire class.
It works in a 3-step manner:
Entering the student data and class data
- This begins from the access that is granted to the teacher.
- The teacher will create a class and enter the relevant details and then create the students within this class.
Creating and marking of student rubric
- Now,a rubric is created for that class. Rubric data is entered manually by the teacher depending on the marking scheme.
- Each rubric field is given a field type depending on whether this will affect the overall score.
- A teacher will then move onto marking. The teacher will mark each student individually depending on how well they are doing for each skill.
Analyzing the results with an algorithm
- Finally, the teacher will have the chance to view all students results in a table.
- This table will show a 1 or 0 for every student– 1 if they have shown they can achieve this skill, 0 if they have not.
- The teacher has the capability to run an algorithm which will identify different zones. Each zone will be not more than a 60%/40% split of 1’s and 0’s.
Delivery & Beyond
Zone Finder has given teachers the ability to identify what needs to be worked on and what doesn’t need to be worked on for each student in that class by creating the unique zones. It has empowered so many teachers to make data-informed teaching decisions.
Moving forward, they aim to essentially have ZoneFinder integrated into Australia's largest learning management systems for education.
Since our last project with High Impact Teachers', we have been their Technology partner and are continually working with them to add new features and functionalities.
I contacted several software development agencies here in Sydney. And they all said, “What you're asking is impossible because we can't find an algorithm for this or it is going to take too long and it's going to cost an arm and a leg." After all this, I began my Google search and that's how I found RSK Business Solutions. I had never dealt with anyone internationally. I literally sent Praveen(MD, RSK Business Solutions) an email and he reverted. I still remember speaking to him around 40 minutes on a conference call. He gave me advice and heard me out. He just took it on board and we kicked off from there!