A new tool driving student engagement.

Client: Clear Scholar
Industry: Higher Education
Size: 30 Employees

Summary


We built a student engagement platform that can be labeled and customized for any university. The mobile app provides students with personalized news and information feeds, unified calendaring with tailored events, instructor-and-university-driven polling, emergency notifications, and a secure mobile student identification. The best part? Students actually use it!

Background

High Alpha is a venture studio that conceives, launches, and scales next-generation enterprise cloud companies. In 2016, they launched ClearScholar, a company aimed at improving higher education through personalized, digital engagement. On most college campuses, there is generally a myriad of systems used to support administration activities, as well as student life; ClearScholar’s goal is to bridge this technology gap by providing a holistic solution geared toward improved student engagement and data-driven decisions by University staff. Their vision is to transform how students engage with learning institutions, enabling universities and students to maximize their lifelong relationships.

The Opportunity

ClearScholar’s plan was to beta debut their technology on Butler University’s campus in Indianapolis. As is the case with many universities, Butler’s student information was often inconsistently or redundantly distributed between numerous official websites, newsletters, and social media accounts. In addition, the university is a leading institution in student-centered education. This combination made them the perfect partner for the debut of the mobile app which uses an algorithmic feed with trending news, announcements, and social posts for students to stay up-to-date.

With the date and target of the app’s unveiling locked-in, ClearScholar partnered with Differential for rapid development and to ensure a smooth launch.

The Work

To help get the project off the ground, a team of senior developers from Differential came in as the initial tech team. After building and launching an MVP (minimum viable product), Differential began training ClearScholar’s internal team to take over the project. As experts in React Native, our Developers coached the ClearScholar team as they became familiar with the framework, and helped them devise an effective strategy to scale the app for numerous universities. As partners, ClearScholar gained access to a wider pool of developer knowledge and help for any questions or blockers. It was a big win for everyone.

The Results


The app provides students with personalized news feeds, unified calendaring, emergency notifications, and a secure student identification, and is available on iOS and Android. Faculty and staff can also conduct informal student polling through the app. Poll reports, as well as insights from student interactions, provide a never-before-seen view into student engagement with a built-in comprehensive analytics suite. This provides education leaders new opportunities to target efforts to drive campus involvement and increase student satisfaction.

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