SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Roberto Medrano, Dmitriy Stepanov, Gilad Parann-Nissany, Srinivasan Sundara Rajan, Sean Houghton

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University of Guelph to Leverage Desire2Learn's Integrated Learning Platform for $6 Million Pedagogy Research Initiative

Desire2Learn's Predictive Analytics Capabilities Enable Researchers to Track, Measure and Report Learning Outcomes

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 04/17/14 -- Desire2Learn (D2L), the EdTech company that created the world's first truly integrated learning platform (ILP), today announced that it is partnering with the University of Guelph (U of G) to spearhead a multi-institutional initiative to enhance their learning outcomes assessment and tracking practices. The U of G is leading a consortium with the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University, McMaster University and Mohawk College to demonstrate and coordinate information about student skills and achievement. The advanced reporting capabilities within the Desire2Learn platform make the ILP a natural fit for this type of cutting-edge pedagogy research.

The pedagogy research project strives to help schools track and report on learning outcomes across programs over time. Researchers will use D2L's predictive analytics capabilities to document and discover the effectiveness of assessment tools on specific subjects while working with educators to develop a curriculum that results in greater student success. In 2012, the U of G became the first Canadian university to establish across-the-board learning outcomes for all degree programs and specializations and is currently looking to further its research in this area. Funding for the project was secured via a $6 million grant from the Productivity and Innovation Fund (PIF) within the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.

"Gaining a better understanding of the student learning experience through empirical data is now an important and even necessary area of research," said Dr. Maureen Mancuso, Provost and Vice-President (Academic), University of Guelph. "We hope to shed light on what pedagogy and assessment tools educators can use to help students understand key learning concepts and guide them towards better outcomes. D2L is a key partner in this study because its integrated learning platform provides researchers with the quantifiable data necessary for evaluation."

The U of G was D2L's first customer and has been integral to its emergence as one of the top EdTech companies in the world. D2L's platform was initially used for the institution's MBA program and the two organizations have worked together over the last ten years to establish U of G as one of the premiere providers of distance education. This symbiotic relationship has helped evolve the D2L ILP and tools, such as D2L ePortfolio, which has helped support U of G's integrative learning by facilitating critical reflection and quicker, more consistent assessments.

"We are proud to support our longtime customer in its pursuit of improving learning outcomes and assessment," said John Baker, D2L President and CEO. "This research is important because it has the potential to shift the very fundamentals of modern pedagogy. Using our integrated learning platform, researchers will be able to evaluate a wide range of teaching techniques and tools to determine how to best engage students on critical concepts and lessons."

About Desire2Learn

Desire2Learn (D2L) is the pioneer of the integrated learning platform, delivering an engaging and personalized learning experience for every individual. With a focus on improving the learning experience, the company partners with thought-leading institutions and organizations to accelerate learning and improve results. D2L's solutions are fully accessible to all, ensuring that learning is available to everyone regardless of geography or ability. A global leader in EdTech, D2L provides an open and extensible platform for more than 1,100 clients and 13 million learners in higher education, K12, healthcare, government and the enterprise sector, including Fortune 1000 companies. D2L has operations in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, Brazil and Singapore. For more information, visit: http://www.Desire2Learn.com.

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