[TL;DR]
We’re excited to launch Instil, an all-new platform that brings together everything teachers need to start teaching live online and stay connected with their students more easily. Check it out and send us your feedback!

We are also on ProductHunt — thank you for your support!

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What is the problem?

Making the transition to real-time teaching online can be complicated. From setting up your own website to scheduling classes (sometimes across multiple time zones), transitioning offline classes to an online environment, setting up a video conferencing tool, working out how to get paid securely… 😵

Instil aims to simplify all these steps so teachers can focus on teaching.

Instil’s features

  • Get your own online public profile (instil.live/your-name) that you can use to promote your classes and share posts
  • Create live classes and connect to your preferred video conferencing tool
  • Set class schedules that best suit you and your students (one-time, recurring),
  • Set visibility of your posts (public, followers-only, class-specific) and build a community around your classes
  • Reply, like, and comment on posts
  • Rate and review classes
  • Connect to Stripe and get paid for your class enrolments
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Why live classes?

There are many great platforms out there where people can watch pre-recorded video content. These sites give students the most flexibility to learn in their own time and pace. Indeed, we have long associated online learning and EdTech with this delivery method.

Some of the shortcomings with this approach however are the lower rates of student engagement and ongoing motivation. Studies show that students in high-interaction courses can score higher grades(1).

By focusing on the live aspect of remote learning, we see Instil as a complementary tool for teachers who may already be offering pre-recorded online courses.

Who are Instillers?

We built Instil for a wide variety of educators and learning settings:

  • Teachers and tutors delivering school and university subjects
  • Experts offering masterclasses and workshops
  • How-tos and skills development
  • Crafts, hobbyists, other enthusiasts
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COVID and the future of learning

COVID has obviously presented huge challenges for many sectors, including education. The World Economic Forum estimated that 1.2 billion children across 186 countries were left out of the classroom at the start of the pandemic(2). Schools and universities are delivering more and more classes online, rapidly trying to adapt to new ways of engaging with students remotely, recognising the rising value of micro-credentials for a new economy(3).

But the pandemic has also presented incredible opportunities to remake the world, to make things more equal, faster, more accessible, and bring us closer together (virtually).

We saw the rate of online e-commerce activities accelerate five-fold(4) and the gig economy projected to double in the US between 2018–2023, to USD 455 billion(5). The massive uptake of video conferencing has transformed all aspects of daily life, from workplaces to governments, schools and even in our homes.

The team behind Instil

Instil is a passion project by Zeb Anwar and myself.

I first met Zeb when I was managing digital platforms at UNICEF Australia. Zeb was in a similar role in UNICEF New Zealand and we quickly hit it off. “What drew us to working at a not-for-profit in the first place was that we both wanted to make a difference”, Zeb shared with me. “In my time at UNICEF, I learned a lot about the important issues affecting children all over the world.”

“What’s more foundational to society than education?”

Zeb had already started building the prototype when he invited me to join him to get Instil off the ground. I never thought of myself as a startup kind of guy, but quickly realised I couldn’t pass on this opportunity to make a dent in the universe.

We’re just getting started

Great things can come out of times of hardship and uncertainty (see organisations that started during recessions). It’s into this world of unknowns that we’ve decided to embark on this journey with Instil.

We’re under no illusion that we got things 100% right out of the gate, but we’re excited to keep improving it as we pursue our mission to democratise learning for everyone, everywhere.

We are eager to get your feedback and would appreciate it if you can help spread the word! 🙌

Check out Instil →

Have questions, comments, or suggestions? Get in touch at calvin@instil.live.

(1) Creating an Effective Online Instructor Presence — Community College Research Center, Teachers College, Columbia University
https://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/media/k2/attachments/effective-online-instructor-presence.pdf

(2) The COVID-19 pandemic has changed education forever. This is how — World Economic Forum
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/04/coronavirus-education-global-covid19-online-digital-learning/

(3) ‘Microcredentials’ Are Changing the Pandemic Job Hunt
https://reasonstobecheerful.world/microcredentials-college-degrees-pandemic-job-search/

(4) IBM US Retail Index
https://techcrunch.com/2020/08/24/covid-19-pandemic-accelerated-shift-to-e-commerce-by-5-years-new-report-says/

(5) The Global Gig Economy: Capitalizing on a ~$500B Opportunity (Mastercard)
https://newsroom.mastercard.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Gig-Economy-White-Paper-May-2019.pdf

UX designer, organiser of things, occasional pundit.

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