Jumping the first hurdle & making it to launch

This is a photo of me and my fellow founder Justin, taken shortly after we finished our degrees at Exeter university. We went to visit India, to see some of the teams we were working with to build our own products and other clients.

Fast forward to three years later and after many twists and turns, our edTech startup Currikula has launched. It’s live. Today. And it’s quite the feeling.

We’ve had many ups and downs along the way, from pivoting 8 months ago to a more focused and refined platform, to traveling to Silicon Valley to get a taste of the start-up culture out there.

Currikula started when me and Justin were in our final year, originally the premise was to bring student essay writing into the 21st century. To take it all online, with all the tools that modern web development could offer. Making students’ lives easier and providing a platform to expand into other avenues of education.

Eight months ago, that all changed as we realised the team we were working with couldn’t achieve the goals we had set. The challenge was too large and too all encompassing. Due to unfortunate events, we had to scrap nearly all the development work we’d done.

To start over.

Like many things in life, the second time is easier – it’s more precise, more considered, and moves faster. We honed in on a specific pain point students had – how to get better grades? What could we do as an edTech company to help them achieve their goals?

We started out with referencing, nothing derails an essay faster than an incorrectly formatted bibliography. Further, we built a feature to help students check if they had inadvertently plagiarised without realising.

Now we are going deeper, using Natural Language Processing techniques we came up with mathematically definable rules of writing that allowed us to give feedback on essays that students had written. Combining that with easy to understand visualisation of their writing statistics, and suddenly they could see their progress from essay to essay. Tracking key KPIs of how they are writing across multiple projects and identifying where they might need to improve.

And so the first stage of Currikula has launched today. It’s live now. Our referencing technology is available to use right this second. We are just putting the finishing touches on the analysis and feedback modules with the intention to launch them in Jan 2018.

I’d like to take a second to thank Justin for being a damn good fellow founder, the roads are never as smooth as you think they will be, but you wouldn’t know it with Justins level head. But now, it is time to put our foot down on the gas… the real work begins today.

Entrepreneur. Developer. Designer. And occassionally interesting. Find out more at samloyd.io

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