AIR partners with UVA-backed education accelerator

UVA-backed Jefferson Education Accelerator will provide research, evaluation of promising education technology products.

education-acceleratorThe American Institutes for Research (AIR) will partner with the Jefferson Education Accelerator (JEA) under an agreement making it a preferred research and evaluation outlet for the newly-launched education technology venture.

The Jefferson Education Accelerator was founded by the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education, which has established a scientific board that oversees all of its research activities. Unlike most ed-tech “incubators,” which target new companies, JEA works to help education companies that have moved past the startup phase to evaluate products and bring them to scale.

In an often chaotic educational marketplace, the goal is to improve student outcomes by offering school districts products based on the best available research.

“JEA’s choice of AIR as a preferred research provider is a testament to the quality and rigor they intend to bring to the research and evaluation of educational products,” said Jessica Johnson, vice president of education at AIR. “It is also a tremendously exciting opportunity for AIR to be on the ground floor of some of the more important developments in educational technology.”

The partnership with AIR comes a month after JEA announced Echo360—an online teaching and learning platform that promotes student engagement before, during, and after class—as the first company to join the Accelerator. JEA is expected to select four other companies for the Accelerator this year.

“AIR brings a breadth and depth of experience in research, evaluation, and technical assistance that we believe will complement the Curry School expertise and support the objectives of JEA,” said Bart Epstein, Founding CEO of the Accelerator. “Together, we’re focused on empowering entrepreneurs, schools and institutions to ensure that technology is having the most positive possible impact.”

Material from a press release was used in this report.

Laura Ascione