IU-related startup Graspable Inc. integrates its educational technology with Google Classroom

Now teachers can review students' work, provide feedback in the same system

man touches large display screen that shows several algebraic equationsView print quality image
Erik Weitnauer of Graspable Inc. demonstrates the Graspable Math technology that allows users to physically manipulate algebraic equations. The company has integrated its educational technology with Google Classroom.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Math teachers will experience more functionality with Graspable Inc.'s algebra education technology now that the company, a startup based on Indiana University intellectual property, has integrated it with Google Classroom.

Erik Weitnauer, president of Graspable, said the integration makes sense for the company. Several clients already use the technology in combination with Google Classroom; one-third of the company's referred traffic comes from the free web service, which is part of Google's G Suite for Education.

"The integration provides teachers with a good method to assign Graspable Math worksheets to their students and survey the results," he said. "When students click the link to the assignment on Google Classroom, they are forwarded to the Graspable Math canvas, to their own copy of the assignment. After they electronically turn in their assignment, teachers access the work, grade it and return it to the student with their comments."

Students use the Graspable Math technology to engage with digital algebraic expressions. They open a browser on their electronic device and follow a URL link to a page with a set of algebraic expressions. These appear on the device's screen in black handwritten text on a white background. Students touch the screen to move the terms around. Users can drag terms to solve equations or to simplify or rearrange expressions. A video about Graspable Math is available online.

Weitnauer said all teachers with access to Google Classroom can benefit from the integration. He said no special knowledge or training is needed for teachers; they only need to log in to the Graspable Math system using their Google Classroom accounts.

"We believe the integration will allow teachers to go beyond using Graspable Math as a presentation tool," he said. "Teachers now have an easy way to invite their students to work with Graspable Math."

IU researchers who developed Graspable's technology received funding from the Institute of Education Sciences, which is part of the U.S. Department of Education, and IU Bloomington's Johnson Center for Innovation and Translational Research. The company licenses the intellectual property from the IU Innovation and Commercialization Office.

About Indiana University Innovation and Commercialization Office

Indiana University ICO is tasked with the protection and commercialization of technology emanating from innovations by IU researchers. Since 1997, IU research has generated almost 3,000 inventions resulting in more than 4,500 global patent applications. These discoveries have generated more than $142 million in licensing and royalty income, including more than $115 million in funding for IU departments, labs and inventors.

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