Home Smart 100 2014 Maths Pathway (VIC) — 2014 SMART 100

Maths Pathway (VIC) — 2014 SMART 100

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This SMART 100 profile and the information it contains is a duplication of content submitted by the applicant during the entry process. As a function of entry, applicants were required to declare that all details are factually correct, do not infringe on another’s intellectual property and are not unlawful, threatening, defamatory, invasive of privacy, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Some profiles have been edited for reasons of space and clarity.

1. THE BEGINNING

This innovation came to life when…

Two young professionals, a software engineer and an astrophysicist, left their positions to become secondary teachers. Placed in disadvantaged schools through the Teach For Australia program, they noticed a huge problem in mathematics learning. Being problem-solvers, they put their heads together to develop a solution. Over eighteen months they experimented and developed alongside their teaching jobs. In June 2013, they quit their jobs, invested their savings to found Maths Pathway, and worked out of a shed in a backyard. Now in April 2014, they have an office and three employees, and are scaling the solution into schools all over Australia.

2. WHAT & HOW

The purpose of this innovation is to…

Less than 1 in 15 Australian students graduate secondary school with a working knowledge of mathematics. When schools use the cost-neutral Maths Pathway solution, this changes. All students thrive in mathematics, with the average rate of learning increasing by 200%.

It does this by…

By using our eLearning system, teachers transform their classrooms into places where every student succeeds. At the core of this is students learning different things at the same time, depending on their individual needs. Rather than leaving students confused and falling behind, Maths Pathway’s online system and learning materials allow each student to learn with a personalised syllabus.

3. PURPOSE & BENEFITS

This innovation improves on what came before because…

Maths Pathway fundamentally changes the way maths classrooms work, at scale. Other eLearning solutions make no real change, because teachers simply fit them in to the existing flawed classroom model. By giving up weekends and holidays, some hard-working teachers have changed how their own classrooms work, but the workload required is not sustainable and certainly not scalable.

Its various benefits to the customer/end-user include…

Students have a dynamic maths course that adapts to suit their own learning needs. Teachers spend less time on administration and more time with the value-adding aspects of their jobs, such as coaching, feedback and helping students who are stuck.

4. COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE

In the past, this problem was solved by…

Textbooks provided resources around which a school maths course can be structured, encouraging a one-size-fits-all approach. eLearning systems provided some opportunity for students’ learning to be tailored to their needs, but did not allow teachers to step away from the one-size-fits-all course structure. Only individual teachers have been able to reform their courses, even without the right supporting resources.

Its predecessors/competitors include…

Many maths eLearning solutions focus on engagement by being entertaining. The best ones adapt to students’ learning needs within activities. However, the structure of the maths course, the goal for the lesson and the way students are assessed remains unchanged.

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5. TARGET MARKET

It is made for…

It is made for Year 5 to 10 students in Australia with some technology access in the classroom. This is around 1.6 million students and 40,000 teachers. In the future, this could also easily scale overseas, especially as classroom technology access becomes more affordable and widespread.

It is available for sale through…

Teachers sign up for free online, and over a term are able to trial with professional development included. For the following school year, schools reallocate existing budget away from textbook resources to pay for Maths Pathway subscription.

Our marketing strategy is to…

We already sell directly and have 10 paying schools and 20 others running trials. We exhibit and present at education conferences all around Australia, particularly those focussed on mathematics or educational technology. Through various means, we also work to create a movement of teachers who join in reforming the way that maths is taught.

Your Turn — VOTE!

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FINE PRINT
This SMART 100 profile and the information it contains is a duplication of content submitted by the applicant during the entry process. As a function of entry, applicants were required to declare that all details are factually correct, do not infringe on another’s intellectual property and are not unlawful, threatening, defamatory, invasive of privacy, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Some profiles have been edited for reasons of space and clarity.

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