August 2020 Industry Spotlight
Attempting to find an online authoring tool of their own is what motivated co-founders Katie Egan (also the co-founder of nonprofit ‘HowGirlsCode’) and Bethany Meyer to create CourseArc, a digital content authoring and management tool based in Howard County that assists educators, nonprofits, and corporations in facilitating the collaborative creation of engaging and accessible online learning. CourseArc is a resource for educational institutions, companies and content publishers to create high quality content that integrates into any Learning Management System. CourseArc offers support in the form of webinars and one-on-one training, among other best practices for eLearning, allowing teachers the ability to see and share the “bigger picture” with their students without the legwork. The company, founded by the two former UMBC students turned colleagues, recently developed a course content sharing tool that allows customers to "divide and conquer", reducing development time and enabling quick access and deployment of quality online content for the coming school year. To learn more, visit www.coursearc.com.
"CourseArc makes online course design simpler, more efficient, less expensive and easier to manage, particularly in the DIY context, where you don’t have to throw it all over the wall to a company that takes a large chunk of tuition revenue and is less apt to authentically know the end user."
- Frank Bonsal III, Managing Partner at Bonsal Capital
InferCabulary founders, Speech Language Pathologists Beth Lawrence and Deena Seifert, have called Baltimore County’s Towson University “TU” Incubator home since 2015, and are grateful for the incredible support they have had scaling InferCabulary in Greater Baltimore. They explain that they would not be where they are today without the full support of the TU Incubator, TEDCO, Bonsal Capital, Maryland Momentum Fund, and the amazing, rich network of other edtech founders with whom they interact at least weekly.
InferCabulary, an app designed to improve K-12 literacy helps students of all abilities thoroughly understand new vocabulary — even abstract ideas— by providing multiple visual examples that require students to figure out the common thread. InferCabulary can be used in-person or virtually, individually or in a group setting. The app teaches thousands of words contained in well-known books through active-engagement with non-verbal, nuanced meanings rather than definitions requiring memorization. InferCabulary has over 100,000 student users in hundreds of schools. To learn more, visit: https://infercabulary.com/.
StraighterLine, a South Baltimore-based software company formed in 2009, helps colleges increase enrollment, yield (the percentage of students who choose to enroll in a particular college or university after having been offered admission), and student persistence while helping students lower the cost and risk of earning a degree. StraighterLine offers online, transferrable college courses in partnership with leading colleges and universities and directly to students. The ability to guarantee the transfer of courses to over 150 accredited colleges – such as the University of Maryland Global Campus – or provide services under their brands allows colleges and students to both achieve better outcomes. Additionally, employee services company Bright Horizons has partnered with StraighterLine to make courses available through corporations. StraighterLine has developed an integral solution to mitigate the costs of higher education, allowing those who wish to seek a degree the flexibility to jump start their education online. To learn more, visit www.straighterline.com.
“StraighterLine is proud to be a Baltimore-based business since 2009 and our location has made a difference in our success. Baltimore has a strong foundation of incubators and investors seeking to support early stage start-ups. The city also offers proximity and affordability – it's relatively inexpensive to set up shop here and there’s easy access to any city on the 95 corridor. This has been critical to helping us successfully more forward with our mission—making a college degree accessible and affordable to everyone."
– Burck Smith, founder and CEO of StraighterLine
Access the full EAGB August 2020 Region On Point newsletter here.
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