Rapples creates ripples in the e-learning market…


Repro India offers Rapples which just not provides e-learning solution, it hand-holds and trains teachers in the use of technology by providing on-site full-time support for initial three months for smooth adoption of new technology-enabled Rapples solution. It’s fully supported LMS empowers teachers by effective delivery & smarter assessments of all students individually. Rapples is being launched at after three years of development, investments in the solution and successful trials in some schools.

The idea that technology can revolutionise education is not new – in the 20th century almost every new invention was supposed to have big implications for schools. With the advent of computers, again it was said that this is going to change the way education is delivered. But the core of the system has changed little since the Middle Ages: a teacher standing in front of rows of students and delivering lessons. This time it is different. As per Bill Gates, this is a special time in education. This is largely because a number of big changes are coming at the same time: high-speed mobile networks, cheap tablet devices, the ability to process huge amounts of data cheaply and sophisticated online gaming and adaptive-learning software.

And more or less everything is getting remarkably cheap to provide, thanks to faster processing, widely available broadband and the resources of cloud computing.

“Having said this, tablets are a very recent invention. Their use in education is still at a nascent stage. Rapples is a pioneering effort in this direction. In fact, the solution being provided by Rapples is the latest, state-of-the-art with very few other comparable solutions available globally,” tells Pramod Khera, executive director, Repro India, the provider for Rapples. Repro is known for its significant backward and forward integration which involves managing customer’s content, printing and delivering in different formats. This has helped Repro to build strong relationships with over 500 publishers in the education sector. Mumbai based Repro India has state-of-the-art facilities in Navi Mumbai and Surat.

Rapples unfolded…

Over the last three years, Repro has been working in the digital space to provide the Rapples and ReproCloudstore platforms to publishers for distributing their content electronically. With this, Repro is able to offer the complete value chain of services to publishers as described in the diagram below: Telling more about Rapples, Pramod informed, “Rapples is a comprehensive School solution provided to schools that enables them to deploy technology based education in their schools.”

The components of the solution includes converting all the subjects books into digital books (e-books), delivering all the subjects through a dedicated Tablet for each student as well as the teachers. Apart from the e-books, they also offer Server, Wi-Fi connectivity, projectors in classroom; student-teacher interactivity, etc. “The content is continuously enhanced by teachers, students and integrated and shared. We also offer back-end LMS to track student data and provide reports to teachers and principal,” added Pramod.

The USPs…

So, how is Rapples different from the current digital classroom solutions available in the market? “Firstly, it is minimally disruptive – the existing method of teaching and resources used by teachers need not be changed, which means that the existing printed books used by school are used as e-books and existing manual procedures / methods, assessments used by teachers are integrated onto the technology platform. It uses current resources with teachers like lesson plans, videos, presentation, documents, assignments, projects etc. It can also utilise existing infrastructure available at school including servers, white-boards, projectors, etc,” told Pramod.

Besides, Rapples uses teacher-determined content, which means that the school / teacher decide what content is required. It provides access to repository of free supplementary learning resources that can be used by teachers to enhance the eBooks. It also integrates Digitised learning resources available with school / teachers. “It also provides additional paid learning / reference eBooks, learning material, etc. from multiple sources and content can be continuously enhanced by teachers, students and integrated and shared.

Augmenting teacher’s capabilities…

The LMS (Learning Management System) which is implemented by Rapples helps in Augmenting Teachers’ Capabilities. It allows teachers to organize tasks for the academic year; schedules assessments, formative and summative tests, activities, projects, etc and provides Lesson Plan which helps teachers to plan their lessons that they need to teach. “The assessment plan includes projects, activities and tests while assessment marking helps teachers to track the students’ performance level on each subject. Besides, teacher can evaluate essay questions once students submit for evaluation. Reports can be generated on the system as well,” told Pramod.

Converting users into ‘fans’…

Rapples platform is technology independent. It runs on all platforms – Android, iOS, Windows and on all devices. “Today’s generation is very comfortable with technology. Most of the students are familiar with the use of smart phones and tablets. Rapples provides them a platform whereby the students are able to use technology for their education – this excites them and increases their interest in learning. Wherever we have implemented this solution, the students have become instant fans of Rapples and have started viewing learning more as fun rather than a chore…,” proudly informed Pramod.

Challenges faced…

“All school and University boards still upgrade their texts and equipment on slow, unsynchronised cycles. Education is a highly regulated public utility in which rules can govern everything, from what goes into textbooks to what should be the composition of a classroom. Teachers fear technology is a means for replacing properly trained humans. Hence, it is important to enable teachers with the technology for it to be successful,” told Pramod.

Future of e-learning solutions…

The tablets offer a unique opportunity to provide education content to all economically and with enhanced effectiveness. The cumbersome middle layer of production and distribution of textbooks can be replaced by an electronic delivery of the right enriched content in the hands of the student. “In fact, the tablet can become a powerful e-learning tool that can improve the effectiveness of education multi-fold. It is a unique opportunity, especially for the emerging economies of South Asia, Africa and China to spread education to the masses in a short period of time. In fact here, the promise is of better teaching for millions of children at lower cost,” told Pramod. “Over time the solution will become more adaptive and will be able to offer customized teaching for each student. The vision is that the solution will offer from ‘one-size-fits-all’ education to a more personalised approach, with technology allowing each child to be taught at a different speed, in some cases by adaptive computer programs, in others by ‘superstar’ lecturers of one sort or another, while the job of classroom teachers moves from orator to coach.”

What’s next?

“Initially, solution will be offered to all school. After six months, Rapples will introduce a solution for higher education that can be deployed in colleges and universities. We also have plans to take Rapples international starting with Africa and some Asian countries,” shared Pramod.

Message to educators/learners…

“An e-learning solution that enhances the teachers’ capability is the one that should be selected because even the best technology will get nowhere without the teachers’ support. The promise in all this for teachers is less drudgery, since some of their duller tasks can be automated, and interesting new challenges as they work out how to reorganise their classes. If the technology can be used as an extra pair of hands in the classroom, teachers will find it possible to do more,” concluded Pramod.

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