LearninPal fills the gap in e-learning

The platform consists 4 components — content consumption, social interaction, virtual classroom and user-generated content

by NUR HANANI AZMAN

THE ups and downs of Covid-19 cases in Malaysia has led to many re-openings and re-closings of schools throughout the country.

Realising how these uncertainties could interrupt children’s education and the flow of schools’ curriculum, MPH Bookstores Sdn Bhd designed “LearninPal”, a one stop social e-learning platform for teachers, students and parents.

According to MPH Group CEO Donald Kee, the platform features an interactive white board, a chat column and an attendance list to make home-based teaching and learning feel like a physical classroom.

Fearing a yawning gap in the quality of education, Kee said unlike general meeting platforms like Zoom and Google Meet, LearninPal has a school set up for a better learning environment.

“We met with the Education Ministry (MoE) in April to expand this platform to primary and secondary schools in Malaysia. They asked for a comprehensive proposal which we had just submitted in mid-May and are waiting for the ministry’s reply.

“The timeline and who will bear the cost depend on the ministry’s response. We are working out a very affordable package for MoE,” he told The Malaysian Reserve.

Kee said the idea to introduce LearninPal started before the pandemic but Covid-19 accelerated online learning.

“We have seen a dramatic acceleration in the development and adoption of new technologies.

“Moving forward, I foresee that digital learning is here to stay even after the pandemic,” he added.

LearninPal was soft launched in December 2020 and to date, has 1,000 subscribers among major examination candidates in Klang Valley.

The platform consists four components — content consumption, social interaction, virtual classroom and user-generated content.

MPH Bookstores head of LearninPal Kuah Sze Mei said the platform offers “palReads”, a digital library with 1,000 titles for academic and leisure reading.

It will be based on subscriptions which start from as low as RM29.99 a month to access the books, revision materials and videos. Meanwhile, “palRevise” gives students an interactive examination experience where they can get the results, check the correct answers and view their scoreboard immediately,” she said.

Pelangi Publishing Group Bhd is among the educational publishing companies taking part in the platform by providing reference e-books.

“palReplay” offers various on-demand academic videos while “palReality” features augmented reality and gamification.

“With palReality, learning is no longer limited to 2D images, thanks to augmented reality technology. Immersive learning will enhance learning beyond textbooks,” Kuah said.

To ensure teachers have control over their online classrooms, she said teachers can fully control the microphone function and interactive whiteboard tools.

“Students can only have access to the mic and tool once the teacher assigns them. Teachers can insert documents, videos and photos during the session.

“LearninPal also provides a secure environment where all the sessions are recorded for safety and security reasons.

“This platform is packed with content with day-to-day learning sessions. As we move along, we plan to expand this to external tutors who want to be part of LearninPal,” she said.

A university student can get their writing published on LearninPal for royalty. Similarly, a tutor can get on board to make some extra income.

“We will go through all the contents and make sure the subject matters are in line with the curriculum before we upload and make them available.

“We also have an in-house editor for the creative segment who ensures that everything is according to the publishing guideline before they are uploaded,” she said.

LearninPal is not limited to academics, but non-academic as well. Through the myMentor segment, someone looking to learn coding can find an instructor and arrange for lessons.

“You can even book for a football lesson on our platform and go to the coach’s centre to learn as this kind of session cannot be done online,” she added.

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