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Adaptive Learning Adjusts School Pace to the Individual Student, Business and Industry Trends Analysis

“Adaptive learning” is courseware model, delivered electronically, that automatically adjusts the presentation of content based on the real-time learning rate of the pupil (as continuously tracked by the software).  An example is an online course that continually assesses the rate of learning through quizzes, and then modifies the content or method of presentation of materials to best suit the student’s ability to learn.  Adaptive learning can also be used in a hybrid manner, combining online testing with in-person lectures.
Knewton, Inc. (which is owned by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.) is an educational software company that specializes in adaptive learning.  Its Alta courseware allows for the personalization of educational content.  Alta collects massive amounts of data from real-time streams, and maps relationships between the individual student and the content.  It integrates learning objectives and student interactions.  The insights gathered from this data collection enables the platform to infer which personalized features it should incorporate for each student.  It allows for students’ learning experiences to be continuously modified, as well as providing reporting capabilities for teachers.  As more students use the system, their learning behaviors are correlated with that of thousands of other students, resulting in between 5 million and 10 million refinements to the data model on a daily basis.  The platform works across a wide variety of third-party digital learning solutions.  It is used by learning companies like Pearson, a major global publisher, to boost student achievement.
An early adopter of Knewton was Arizona State University, which found in a study that 5,000 freshmen at the school enrolled in online math courses from Pearson powered by Knewton.  50% finished four weeks early, while another 25% finished in time to switch to regular freshman math.  Pass rates rose from 66% to 75%.  Withdrawal rates have dropped by more than 50%.  Another plus is the ability for faculty to easily track students who are falling behind and need help.

A Representative List of Organizations that Have Used our Research and Products:


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Hilton Worldwide, Marketing Manager

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Gary White, Business Materials Selector, Penn State University

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Michael Oppenheim, Collections & Reference Services, UCLA

Plunkett Research Online is an excellent resource…the database contains a wealth of useful data on sectors and companies, which is easy to search and well presented. Help and advice on how to conduct, export and save searches is available at all stages.

Penny Crossland, Editor, VIP Magazine
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