Sunday, November 8, 2015

Malaysia Market: UBER Partners with CourseNetworking

UBER is partnering with CN because UBER sees value in what CN can bring to the world of education.

3 Key Changes CN Can Provide to the Education World

1) Conventional classroom walls can be broken-down

Common Learning Management Systems used by educational institutions allow students and lecturers of a given class to communicate only among one another, restricting ideas to only individuals in the particular class. With Global Classmate feature in CN, the walls are broken-down by allowing members of a given classroom to connect with people outside the classroom. The possibilities of exploring new ideas and perspectives globally are endless and can help pave the way for innovation as new ideas are bred.

2) Learning is social
Are you a person who enjoys learning with your friends? Based on our CN users’ responses, we found that most people prefer to study in a group or in pairs. This learning style encourages discussion and the flow of ideas. With that being said, the interface that CN offers poses a similar structure to your common social media platforms. CN includes features that mirror platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn, as we emphasize the social networking aspect. This maximizes the experience of learning with others, as well as encourages further engagement among learners.

3) Global learning is the way to go

Advancing technology makes communicating with others over long distances easier than ever before. On CN, users from all over the world-spanning across 150 countries, are experiencing a new way of learning via various tools and features available to our users. Specifically our live conferencing ClassCast feature on CN; this tool is similar to Google Hangouts or Skype and improves learning and communication by making online lectures and presentations flow with ease. Users can also combine the seamless video conferencing tool with tools like Polls, and Quizzes to change the entire interactive learning experience.

The world of Learning Management Systems is changed once more by CourseNetworking. Our technology disrupts the traditional world of education, much like UBER disrupted the world of transportation. You didn’t know technology could be this cool, did you?

*To celebrate our partnership with UBER, we are offering 2 FREE UBER rides worth RM 30 each to our CN blog readers* -CLICK THE LINK BELOW
-only applicable to those located in Malaysia

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Instagram Competition Winner Donates Prize Money to Breast Cancer Awareness

The first ever CN Instagram competition, CN Around You has officially come to a close and we’ve chosen winners! We asked CN users, students, followers, worldwide to send us a picture of “CN around them” The creative responses came from people across the U.S., Malaysia, and even Iran. The image submitted via Instagram with the most likes was pronounced the winner of $100.

Our $100 prize winner, Olivia Martinez is a student at IUPUI. She found out about the CN competition through Instagram from the CN account (@thecngram) and entered a picture of a dog with a drawn thought bubble “thinking of CN”. Olivia knew she wanted to win the competition so she could donate her winnings to her sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha’s philanthropy.

Olivia Martinez - IUPUI ZTA Member
“I’m donating [the money] to my sorority’s philanthropy event, Big Man on Campus (BMOC). All of the proceeds go to breast cancer awareness and education. Breast cancer affects a lot of people; after I entered [the competition] I thought of all the loved ones out there affected and decided to contribute my winnings.” BMOC is a big pageant show where representatives from each fraternity on IUPUI campus participate by performing a talent and raising money.

Olivia’s decision to donate actually helped her win the competition with 219 likes on her picture. She posted on Facebook asking her sorority sisters, friends and family to like her picture. Other schools even got involved to help her reach her goal. The competition gained CN a stronger following base and connection with participants. CourseNetworking will host more social media events in the future. 

To donate to ZTA's philanthropy event BMOC for Breast Cancer Awareness and Education, you can go to

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

CourseNetworking Utilizes Microlearning

Microlearning is the name given to the trend that has been transforming our society for years. It is a form of teaching and learning by the way of small increments and short, concise “bite size” content. Microlearning can take many forms – one being in the form of a microblog, the most famous one, known as Twitter.

This trend came to be alongside evolving technology. With handheld computers, smartphones, apps and the pace of life increasing more each day, our learning had no choice but to evolve. This trend soon took on the workforce, making training- especially for millennials easier. It became the preferred option. According to, microlearning is meant to be engaging, relevant, and “consumed at the time of need” for learners. One of the most important platforms for microlearning is video because it engages learners and has been shown to have higher learner retention rates.

Other benefits of applying microlearning include:
  • Time efficient for instructors and learners
  •  Flexibility of mobile learning through multi-media “on the go”
  •  Significantly reduces risk of becoming overwhelmed with learning content
  • Ability to be carried out in a variety of ways: email, video, online posts, chat sessions, or short presentations

CN ( has embraced the microlearning trend and intends to continue helping learners achieve better learning outcomes while helping instructors apply innovative pedagogies. Learners create short posts related to course content and use hashtags to search for “bite size” specific posts created by their peers. The ability to embed images, videos and files helps aid the engaging aspect of microlearning and expands the scope of learning. Mobility is also an important benefit of microlearning and CourseNetworking continues to improve and develop the CN mobile app to help learners stay connected and learn on the go. In addition, CN includes essential, traditional learning management features such as GradeBook, DropBox, Email, and Quizzes; paired with the social, engaging environment that includes the Eportfolio, post and poll interactions, the Anar Seed reward system and badges. The CN has even taken it a step further by including the Global Classmates feature; it can be used to increase the variety of the learning opportunities, by allowing students and instructors to connect with similar learners, instructors, and courses globally. The possibilities are endless and microlearning is only expected to become more relevant as technology advances.

Multimedia Embedded Course Post with Reflections 


Thursday, August 20, 2015

CN Post LTI: Make Your LMS Course Social

CourseNetworking has taken the engaging, social features of and the convenience of LTI (Learning Tool Interoperability) capabilities of an LMS and wrapped them into a new and improved online discussion forum: CN Post. Certified by IMS, this free LTI integration tool can be easily added to any existing LMS including Moodle, Blackboard, Canvas, Desire2Learn, Sakai and more.

This new mini version of CourseNetworking automatically creates user accounts and corresponding CN course sites when users click through from their integrated LMS. It shows users the course feed and allows them to create posts, polls, reflections, and more all within their LMS browser window. CN Post helps courses become more resourceful as it breaks down the walls of traditional classrooms by not only opening students up to more learning opportunities globally, but also by giving them intuitive ways to quiz their peers, share helpful learning resources, ask questions, search posts by hashtags and more.

CN Post is set to have its first release at IU campuses before the start of the fall 2015 semester as it has been integrated into the IU Canvas LMS Network. Integration with other LMS is not only free to all educational institutions worldwide, but is an easy process as well. Interested admin parties can simply email for more information. Workshop webinars are offered free of charge to both course instructors and institution administrators.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

CyberLab Graduate Research Assistant Produces New Algorithm for CN Word Cloud Analytics

Maziar Bouali, a graduate research assistant and software project manager in the IUPUI CyberLab, has researched and developed a module/framework for the Word Cloud Analytics on CN. This module aims to benefit instructors and students alike and is set to release as an LTI (Learning Tools Interoperability) tool soon.

A traditional word cloud feature counts the number of times a word is mentioned in a given text, and produces a visual compiled of popular words; the more frequently used words appear in larger text and the less frequently used words appear in smaller text. This shows the viewer the key, or most important topics at a glance.

Maziar Aboualizadeh Behbahani
Maziar’s version includes additional “input parameters”, making it a more efficient algorithm while providing meaningful, and appealing word cloud visuals to instructors and learners. His version allows the filtration of “junk words” or common words of the English language, such as articles so the system can make a more valuable selection. This “junk words” filter is customizable based on language and course needs and can be set up by CourseNetworking Admin or an Instructor. Maziar’s algorithm also allows grouping of similar words or tenses of one word, along with a “two-word coefficient”. The “two-word coefficient”, Maziar said, “was actually a request from a professor to Dr. Ali Jafari [CEO of Course Networking]” and the task was given to him. He went on to explain,

“It groups together words that are used next to one another, for example, if the two words ‘social media’ are used next to one another three times, it has more importance than just ‘social’ or just ‘media’ being used five or six times each. This logic is configurable.”

This means that his algorithm recognizes the importance of a repeated two word phrase, subject or topic and treats it as such, instead of separating the two words as a traditional word cloud would. The improvements also include the ability to ignore numbers, case of words, and enforce a minimum frequency a word must appear to be included in the world cloud visual. Along with these additions, his algorithm also allows administrators or instructors to choose the number of selected worlds. Maziar explained, “If the word cloud algorithm filters through posts and finds 100 words that may be used, an administrator can dictate, or possibly, an instructor may select to view or use the top 15 and so on.” This narrows down topics and heightens word cloud value even more.

With all of the additions to the traditional word cloud, within Maziar’s algorithm, there are many benefits to be gained from this project. He described the projected benefits and incentives for creating algorithm by saying, “it will save instructors and learners time, they can look at the word cloud from time to time and quickly gain the idea what the main discussion topics in the course were; it will also help keep them up to date with content and on track with what the major learning interests appear to be [based on size of the words].” This algorithm’s goal is to be faster, smarter, of higher quality, improve analytics and to produce a better course focus.

This update didn’t come easy, however. There is no ‘open source tool’ or template code for this type of algorithm. Maziar Bouali developed the algorithm from scratch based on his own research and use of the platform jQuery. When asked about his process, he admitted 

“Getting [the algorithm] to recognize similar words was, and continues to be the biggest challenge, humans complete tasks like this with ease but computers require artificial intelligence.” 

After his research and analyzation of other website’s capabilities, he was able to complete his development. Soon, Maziar’s LTI Word Cloud will be available at as a beta. As for the future, CourseNetworking plans to conduct extensive testing and then release Maziar’s algorithm as an LTI tool that may be added to other LMS as a plug in, for example, the tool could be added to Canvas, Sakai, Moodle, and others. Maziar says there could even be talk of releasing his project as an open source tool someday. He is set to graduate from IUPUI with a Master’s Degree in Electronic Computer Engineering in May of 2016 and will continue his work as a software developer.