EFA Crowdsourcing Challenge Prize winners
UNESCO, Nokia and the Pearson Foundation today announced the six prize winners of the Education For All (EFA) Crowdsourcing Challenge for educational mobile applications. The selection was made on the recommendation of an international jury, which met on the 28th of August 2012.
The EFA Crowdsourcing Challenge winners come from China, India (two prize-winners), Kenya, Switzerland, and the United States. They will each receive a prize of US$3,000, offered by the Pearson Foundation. The Foundation will also donate a library of children’s books, worth a further US$3,000, to a not-for-profit organization in the country of each laureate.
The prize winner for application ideas concerning literacy was Test On Texts by Sanjith Yeruva (United States), a mobile application that helps students assess their knowledge via text questions and suggests content in an intuitive manner. This easily implemented idea has social and education potential for a wide range of groups.
The prize winner for Universal Primary Education applications was I-Learn by Swaroop John (India). I-Learn encourages picture-based learning to complement radio broadcasts. The concept of combining radio with mobile technology has enormous potential and can be very powerful.
In the Youth and Adult Learning Needs category, Education Time Bank by Eric Kotonya (Kenya) was selected. The application encourages teens and adults to learn in personalized, interactive short sessions on highly-specialized topics. The proposed app lets anyone credit their account by providing live training through IM or video chat, and later use these credits to purchase training on other topics from community members.
The Quality of Education winner is Start “Mission for the week” programme by Harkirat Singh (India). This mobile application provides teachers with a new mission every week, so that their way of teaching, understanding and helping students gives the best results. An Honorable Mention was awarded to Mobile Education Framework by Simon Botes (South Africa). Mobile Education Framework is a cross platform framework and interactive mobile forum for the distribution of quality mobile educational content.
Mobile Partners in Education by Laura Blackheart (United States) was selected in the Gender Parity and Equality in Education challenge. The application pairs up girls in disadvantaged communities with an advantaged classroom (across the globe or close to home) with mobile technology. A girl who does not have the opportunity to access a good education can join her sponsor class through a mobile device via voice, video, text, and app.
In the Early Childhood Care and Education category, Health Phone by Nand Wadhwani (China) was selected. Health Phone provides information for women to help them make healthy decisions for themselves and their families. Content includes information on nutrition, childhood diseases, pregnancy, childbirth, the first year of life, child survival, growth, learning, development and protection, and women empowerment. Videos, audio recordings, images, and text messages will be produced and delivered to families via mobile phones.
In addition to the grand prizes, Nokia offered six “spot prizes” consisting of a Nokia Lumia 800 phone to the best ideas received during the competition.
Close to one thousand submissions were received in the competition for ideas on how mobile communication can help achieve EFA goals. From 10 October 2011 to 31 May 2012, education experts, teachers, parents, students, software developers and anyone else wanting to participate posted ideas on the platform hosted by Nokia. Each month featured a sub-challenge focusing on one of the six EFA goals.
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