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Iversity.org

Collaboration Tool for Academics


Tiny
Published 04/13/2012 and rated Ratingstars4 4 out of 5 stars
by Robyn Valenzuela
What can you use the app for?

Iversity is an educational platform that professors and students can use to stay connected with one another. It can also lead to a more blended classroom experience, that is adding an online element to a traditional classroom style course. Iversity could also be implemented effectively into an online educational establishment. Essentially, what Iversity allows professors to do is setup a course website, upload materials, share links and applicable videos, broadcast announcements and upload lectures or course notes. Iversity enables students to access course material from anywhere in the world and at any time, collaborate with fellow students on assignments and key learnings, and build an archive of learning materials (i.e. wiki's, blogs, etc.). Iversity brings the learning process into modern day, empowers it using current technology and allows students to learn in a way that is most familiar to them- online!

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What is the history and popularity of the app?

Iveristy is a German-based operation which was developed by an international dream team of 20 young graduate students. The development team has students who have studied all over the world at such institutions as Cambridge, Columbia, Duke and the National University of Singapore, among other establishments. Their goal is to bring the educational system into the digital age. Iveristy is backed behind 1 million in Euros in funding from the BFB Fr├╝hphasenfonds Brandenburg and bmp media investors in July 2011. Iversity is similar to the US-based application called BlackBoard which is pretty popular among US institutions.

What are the differences to other apps?

Iveristy is different from other class collaboration tools in that it is most popular in European countries and that it offers a very comprehensive set of educational tools and applications within its service offering. Being backed by over 1 million Euros also makes Iversity a stable and solid operation that classes and schools can feel comfortable in integrating into their coursework. The features of discussion appear more polished, almost like Facebook and the Social Reading feature where classmates can highlight and leave comments on .pdf versions of their course texts is brilliant.

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How does the web app look and feel to use?

Iversity has a extremely polished and engaging look to it. It is sure to draw students in, since it was designed by graduate students. While other course collaboration tools seem to be built for instructors, Iversity seems like it is more geared towards students since it tries to incorporate more modern features and technical applications into its platform. The site was very fast, registration was quick and the layout was simple and easy to navigate through.

How does the registration process work?

Registerig for Iversity is quick and easy. Users could also logon using their Facebook account as well. Iversity requests a user's email address and a password in order to get started. Users are then asked if they are a student, an instructor or an administrator or other. From there, Iversity arranges its content and capabilities in the most logical manner based on the audience. Users are guided through building out their portfolio and asked to setup a photo and explain some things about themselves so they can become more apart of the Iversity community. However, aside from a user's name and which institution they represent, all of these other elements are optional. One issue may be if the user's university is not as popular, it may not show up on the Iversity list, which can make registering for the application a bit difficult.

What does it cost to use the application?

The registration and use of the application Iversity, with the exception of the print-on-demand service, are free of charge. Iveristy reserves the right to amend or change the cost of their services at any time.

Who would you recommend the application to?

Iversity is a great tool for instructors to implement into their classroom setting, especially if their institution doesn't promote or require another similar application (i.e. BlackBoard). Students who get to engage in an Iversity blended or online class would find it modern and refreshing from other academic applications.

  • Professors can setup a course website
  • Teachers can engage and collaborate with students
  • Students can access course materials
  • Students can discuss course topics and build ideas


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