For the last 3 months we’ve been building BeeHyve (www.beehyve.io) — an online community that engages Computer Science students from around the world and provides them with the best educational resources.
We’d love to tell you about our journey and how we’ve already impacted thousands of students globally :)
Going Back to School:
It’s back to school season for students in the US.
The average student in the class of 2021 was born in 1999. Most students have no clue what Dial-Up Internet was, much less know a world without high-speed internet. For most of their lives, students have always been connected to the Internet. For this generation, even email is too antiquated.
“Email is for old people, and for getting my Amazon order confirmation” ~ overheard from a college student.
However, when students go to school this fall they will largely learn the same way as students did who were born in the 1940s. Students will be told to buy a textbook (most won’t) and will be thrown into a classroom for an hour, to listen to a lecture that they will later forget. Even though technology is starting to make it’s way into the classroom, the fundamental model remains largely untouched.
Students today have the magic power of the web. They can discover the best learning materials (videos, lectures, practice problems) online regardless of the source. The web also makes it possible to engage with anyone in the world and build online communities, yet students are thrown into large lecture rooms and told to learn at the same pace as everyone else.
Learning about Learning:
For the better part of a year, we’ve been trying to understand how people learn, particularly Computer Science students. We’ve talked to over a hundred students from around the world. The most important thing we learned was that students need two things — Community and Access.
People learn best in communities — safe spaces where they can engage with other students, work together, ask questions, and build off of each other’s understanding. We saw Facebook Groups, Slack channels, GroupMe, even SnapChat used in creative ways to build community.
Students also need access to tools that unlock their full potential and allow them to learn on their own terms — videos, lectures, practice problems, and interactive tutorials. Students are already augmenting their learning with what they find on the internet via Google, StackOverflow, Quora, etc.
A Simple Test:
Over the last 2 months we’ve been testing how we can build community and provide access to students around the world.
Imagine if you could instantly collaborate with thousands of students around the world who are learning the same thing as you. What if you could easily discover the best resources for learning whatever you needed, regardless of where it came from? What if the explanation was more than a textbook, but a video? An interactive tutorial? An example problem?
BeeHyve’s mission is to build the best spot in the world to learn Computer Science. We’re doing this by building a community of the more than 1M Computer Science students around the world. Within this community, we’re providing the infrastructure necessary to discover the best resources for learning any topic. Even though we’re just getting started, we’re already connecting over 10k students from 200 different schools across the world.
What is BeeHyve:
BeeHyve is a collection of 19 learning communities focused on common Computer Science classes taken by students around the world.
Through BeeHyve, students can engage with other students, share the most useful lectures, tutorials, and even practice exams for any Computer Science subject, and collaborate by engaging in discussions and voting on the most helpful resources.
- Each community contains high quality educational resources that are organized by topic, type, and curated by students learning the same material.
- Over 10k students from over 200 schools around the world are already using BeeHyve.
Where We’re Going:
Over the next couple of months we’re focused on making BeeHyve the best community for learning Computer Science.
We’re doing this by making BeeHyve personal for each student, enabling students to express themselves through projects and better engage with other students. We’re also launching more learning communities, ensuring we’re covering subjects that Computer Science students learn.
We know that we won’t revolutionize education overnight, but we hope that BeeHyve continues to have a positive impact on people’s lives.
We’d love to hear what you think! Connect with us @BeeHyveBuzz.
We’re super excited about what’s next :)