June 8, 2021

Bringing Personalized Experiences to Education With You

This content was previously published by Blackboard, now part of Anthology. Product and/or solution names may have changed.

From retail to healthcare to entertainment, today we experience and expect more personalized interactions in our day-to-day lives than ever before. It began with the digitization of online shopping, fueling a rise in both individual and aggregated data use to customize and enhance the experience. Today, that critical mass of data powers proactive nudges, purchase suggestions based on past shopping habits, and push notifications to buy more milk before you run out. Healthcare and entertainment experienced similar journeys to personalization.

But education has been on a different path. While we’ve come a long way from the traditional experience in education, why hasn’t education kept pace with the shift to customized experiences that other industries achieved? The common driver that we see in other industries is a critical mass of users engaging consistently on a digital platform, enabling data to be securely harnessed with appropriate privacy protections. Education didn’t experience the massive digital engagement that transformed other industries until the events of 2020.

The massive shift to online learning driven by the COVID-19 global pandemic enabled continuity of education in the near term, while opening the door for education to move forward on a journey toward more personalized experiences. No one knows exactly how this will evolve in education over the next decade. Education is unique, as is every place of learning around the world.  But, at Blackboard, we’re ready to embark on that journey to personalization together with you.

We’ve had our sights set on the future for the past few years and have the ability to securely harness data, with robust privacy protections, from across our ecosystem of EdTech solutions with the specific intent of enabling personalized experiences to drive improved outcomes.

Students need nudges, outreach and access to solutions that help them stay on track, from enrollment through graduation. Younger students need parents not just to be informed, but to be engaged.

Personalized experiences for educators, like data insights built right into the virtual classroom, can inform instructional decisions in real-time. Administrators armed with class, department and school-level data can better inform policies and train staff at their one-of-a-kind institution.

Personalized experiences require continuous improvement. The data gathered through user experiences – like the 25 billion weekly interactions in our learning management and virtual classroom systems – feed back into our secure data foundation, informing what’s next. Our customers own their data and entrust it to us. We take this responsibility very seriously. We were among the first to adopt the European Union's high global data privacy standards for safeguarding our customers' data, and we continuously enhance our privacy and security programs.

At Blackboard, our thinking, investments and technology development have been singularly focused on enabling increasingly personalized user experiences, fueled by data, to advance learning and drive better outcomes for students, educators and institutions. It’s exciting to think about the possibilities, and we’re excited to bring them to life with you.

Bill Ballhaus