“WizKlub facilitator driven sessions have moved completely online in this era of lockdown. We have ensured that appropriate pedagogical changes have been made to ensure learning efficacy in the online classroom as well.” – Amit Bansal, Founder of WizKlub.
Ed-tech or education technology is a practice and a discipline of implementing digital technology to deliver a new form of learning architecture. This technology has the ability to change the way of traditional learning while enabling new levels of standardisation and democratised access. According to reports, the global education technology market is expected to grow from USD 43.27B in 2015 to USD 93.76B in 2020 at a CAGR of 16.72% during the forecast period from 2015 to 2020.
With such a vision, Bangalore-based WizKlub is catering to the market where the parents are looking for programs beyond the school curriculum and is offering an affordable solution that imparts quality experience and learning efficacy even at scale. In January this year, the startup raised INR 7 crore in a seed round led by Incubate Fund India and Insitor Impact Asia Fund.
Founded by Amit Bansal in Feb 2018, WizKlub is a hybrid learning environment which has a facilitator driven session to enable students to get started on a skill. The startup is a research-based education company that combines technology with research in cognitive learning with the aim of empowering K-8 students with skills that are required to succeed in the coming years. Currently, the startup has over 150 centres in Bangalore and has progressed over 3,000 children through its programmes.
According to Bansal, the flagship products HOTS and SmartTech programs develop cognitive skills in children aged between 5 to 15 years with the help of an AI-powered tech platform that delivers a personalised learning path for every child.
HOTS – HOTS is the Higher Order Thinking Skills across comprehension, critical thinking, logical reasoning and problem-solving. The WizKlub HOTS program develops higher-order thinking skills to ensure that every child is a smart reader and a smart problem solver.
SmartTech – The WizKlub SmartTech Program is for children as young as 6 years and is designed to help them build and code technology. Every month, children build and code tech products such as smart light and gesture remote. According to Bansal, this program builds lifelong skills and confidence to create tech products by application of coding, robotics, smart devices and AI.
The Learning Path – Each child gets a personalised learning path based on the existing proficiency as well as a learning progression. The child interacts with the facilitator in a weekly manner to master one skill and then move to the next one.
How The Products Are Different In The Market
To this question, Bansal replied that most of the ed-tech players in K-12 space are still focused on curricula such as Maths and Science. However, WizKlub is mainly focused on core cognitive skills such as aptitude that helps in making every student a smart learner and an adept problem solver.
“The products offered by us are designed with research in cognitive learning. Additionally, it also provides a personalised learning path for every learner based on existing levels. The major highlight is hybrid learning cutting across facilitator, app, conversations through artificial intelligence innovation,” says Bansal.
Use of AI and ML at WizKlub
WizKlub uses AI and Analytics for ensuring higher learning efficacy of its programs. The program has an 83% learning efficacy. According to Bansal, the heart of the system is to fine-tune the efficacy of every learning item for different types of learners. Some of the AI applications are mentioned below:
- Personalisation: The WizKlub AI system creates a personalised learning path for each child based on past performance on similar skills. Performance on a skill is judged using a mix of absolute score, accuracy in first attempt and number of successive correct responses.
- WizBuddy: Wizbuddy is an AI-powered chatbot that can understand the context of the query using NLP and give a context-based response to help the learners.
- Item Performance: WizKlub uses ML models to establish the performance of each learning item. The items that are not working well are retired and replaced with items that are working well.
- WizSkill: In WizSkill, the kids will be creating skills on the Conversational AI and will be able to experience various AI elements from the application point of view on Natural Language Understanding (NLU), Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Far-Field Voice Recognition and Deep Learning.
- WizML: The WizML platform helps in making a child aware of different machine learning techniques applied to the world of IoT sensors, which are categorised into two major areas that are classification and regression. The topics here covered are: –
- Data capturing through IoT endpoint sensors of WizGear
- Data preprocessing
- Data visualisation such as bar plots, scatter, pie, box, etc.
- Data modelling such as decision tree, linear regression, support vector machine, among others
- Model Evaluation such as AUC ROC, precision, recall, accuracy, etc.
Core Tech Stack
Wizblock.ai is a programming playground from Wizklub. The platform gives age-based programming experience to kids aged between 6 to 14 years. According to Bansal, it is a container-based web application, which is built on top of Docker containers. Wizblock’s containers are deployed on Amazon EC2 Servers, web application framework used within Wizblock.ai is “Python Flask Framework.”
The security layer of Wizblock.ai uses JWT security mechanism to protect the user’s authorisation to application. For increasing the scalability and stability of applications, it uses RabbitMQ (Queue Management) and Redis (Cache Management).
For managing the data of end customers and trainers, it uses the Postgres database. Nginx is also used for load balancing and Kibana, LogStack, Elasticsearch and FileBeat to monitor the performance of the application.
Tackling Hiring Phase
To this question, Bansal stated, “We look for people who are problem solvers and are excited with our mission to create a million thinking minds. There are no set templates for success as we are creating something which does not exist, hence no historical template to follow. Hence, I believe it is important to get people who are problem solvers and are driven by the mission.”
In the first year of operation, the startup focussed on building deep penetration in Bengaluru and chart a blueprint for national rollout targeting 12000 students. Over the next couple of years, the startup is aiming to be the preferred choice for supplemental education in the early years segment of education for over 50000 students.