Time‘s tech columnist Harry McCracken highlights a brand new tech platform called Versal that’s designed to let teachers—or anyone else, for that matter—create and share their own interactive lessons or courses.
Currently in beta form, Versal enables educators to pull together text, videos, and interactive features like charts and simulations using a Web-based editor. A key feature appears to be what the company calls “learning gadgets"—essentially customizable apps that users can drag and drop into their presentations. McCracken explains:
Among the gadgets debuting in Versal's first courses are one that lets 3D modelers manipulate a skeleton; another allows color-theory students to tap on paintings to see which colors they use; and a third ... provides a simulation of how epidemics spread. They all worked well on both my PC and iPad, and hint at how all sorts of gadgets could enhance all sorts of lessons.
Intrigued? If so, it might worth your while to play around on the site a little: To spur interest, Versal is currently offering grants of $1,000 to $25,000 for standout course-creation ideas.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Teaching Now blog.