Top Hat, the leading active learning platform for higher education, unveiled Slate, the free communication tool purpose-built for higher education, providing students and educators with digital spaces to easily communicate, collaborate, and build connections that will improve their academic and social lives. Slate is integrated with the Top Hat platform and available to all users, effectively empowering educators with a full set of tools to incorporate active learning, improve student engagement, and build community in their courses in any teaching scenario — whether classes are taught in-person, online, or a hybrid combination of both.
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Introducing Slate, a free communication tool purpose-built for higher ed & integrated with @TopHat’s active learning platform that invites students and educators to connect, collaborate, and build a sense of community — inside and outside the classroom.
As higher ed institutions were forced to move courses online as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, educators have been challenged to provide a meaningful and impactful educational experience to students. According to a recent survey of more than 3,000 current higher education students, almost eight out of 10 (78 percent) respondents said their online courses lacked the engagement of in-person classes1. In a separate survey of more than 800 higher ed instructors, focused on understanding how they are preparing for the Fall academic term, almost nine out of 10 (87 percent) educators responded that fostering a sense of community amongst students in their class is moderately to highly important.2 When it comes to their biggest concerns about teaching in the Fall academic term, some of the top issues identified by educators include:
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- The ability for students to feel connected to their classmates (68 percent of respondents)
- Their own ability to build connections with students (61 percent)
- Their own ability to build a sense of community with students (60 percent)
“As most educators and institutions plan for a primarily online or hybrid teaching format in the Fall, they’re facing an uphill battle to deliver educational ROI to students in a virtual setting,” said Mike Silagadze, founder and CEO, Top Hat. “We know students are expecting a more engaging, interactive, and human experience than they had during the last academic term. With today’s launch of Slate, we’re releasing a powerful tool to all Top Hat users that replaces simple bandage solutions that were used to stay in contact with students in the last academic term. During a time when students are physically dispersed all over the country and even the world, Slate will help educators and institutions maintain that sense of community and belonging even after students can safely return to campus.”
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