When we think of being a teacher, grading coursework is likely not the most appealing aspect of the job, but it is largely a necessity. Danish startup Peergrade is looking to remove part of the burden from teachers, however, by offering a platform through which students can evaluate and provide feedback on the work completed by their peers.
The platform that Peergrade has created allows teachers to create assignments, with an evaluation rubric. Having completed the assignments, which can range from Word documents to YouTube videos, students are given several to evaluate. Having completed the evaluations, students and teachers alike are then offered access to feedback on the assignments. This system does not merely organize the feedback process, however, but also provides data on the questions (in the assignment and in evaluation process) that were difficult to answer, uses statistical models and algorithms to identify the best and worst feedback (including spotting bias), and generates reports on each student, including data on the assignments that they have submitted and the feedback that they offered.
In order to monetize their platform, Peergrade has decided to charge educational institutions an annual license fee. The 3 packages that they offer differ in size (“small”, “large”, and “university”), based on the number of courses and students, as well as amount of data, required.
Peergrade tells me that they launched their prototype in September and tell me that they now have more than 3,000 students in 50 courses. They have no external investors and have not given away any equity at this point, but do claim a small grant from The Danish Innovation Foundation and Danish incubator Thinkubator. Going forward, they are planning to follow in the footsteps of numerous other startups by expanding internationally, while also unveiling teacher-focused features that will make it easier to automatically evaluate the quality of text feedback.