AYING FAREWELL TO 2018
A GOOD ENDING MAKES A GREAT BEGINNING
It’s 2019, the start of an entire new year, and many exciting events await for UNIwise, WISEflow and its users.
But before we direct our gaze towards the year ahead, let’s take a look back at 2018. The past year was an eventful one as well, with many new educational institutions added to the list of WISEflow users, much new and improved functionality and global bewilderment on what GDPR actually meant.
New WISEflow users in 2018
In 2018, we broke our record once again, with 1.5 million exams conducted in WISEflow – a 36% increase compared to 2017. Both summer and winter exams set a new record for daily users, exceeding 30.000 concurrent users on peak exam days.
We also made a lot of headway with new users of WISEflow.
In Sweden, we closed 2018 by winning three new tenders: the University of Borås, the University of Linköping and Kammarkollegiet (the Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency in Sweden). We look forward to a good working relationship and making more Swedish friends in the future.
On our home turf, we re-won the tender for the Danish University Colleges, extending our partnership for another four years. With this agreement in place, UNIwise continues to deliver to more than 80% of higher education institutions in Denmark.
We also secured contracts with the Danish National Academy of Music, the Rhythmic Music Conservatory, the vocational and technical school EUC Nordvestsjælland and Marstal Maritime Academy.
In Norway, Kristiania University College chose to switch to WISEflow. This decision followed a one-year comparative project between WISEflow and their former exam and assessment solution, in which WISEflow was chosen as the superior platform. Kristiania University College emphasised that WISEflow was more secure, had better support and service, provided greater flexibility and had more functionality, better suited for the needs of higher education.
Furthermore, we added University College of Norwegian Correctional Service and the technical college Tinius Olsen to the list of WISEflow users.
To the west, we experienced a significant rise in the interest in WISEflow. In a mix of won tenders and pilot programmes, we have initiated working relationships with a further five UK-based universities: Sheffield Hallam University, Imperial College London, Newcastle University, University of Northampton and University of Surrey. We also added the first UK boarding school, St. John’s School Leatherhead.
Improved support for your workflow
Functionality is a vital part of the WISEflow user experience, and 2018 was dedicated to making that experience even better.
Our developers had a very productive year, releasing some exciting functionality in 2018 that can enhance exams and assessment for exam administrators, assessors and students.
To support our goal of increasing the transparency of exams and the possibility of providing better feedback to students, we released Rubrics in the spring of 2018. Rubrics is a great educational asset for both assessors and students, formalising assessment criteria in an easily decipherable assessment matrix. By using Rubrics, educational institutions can improve the transparency, consistency and alignment of their exam and assessment process, while also providing a basis for structured feedback.
We took our first major steps towards expanding digital on-site exams to include third party resources and online services. With the Whitelisting functionality, educational institutions can new conduct secure digital on-site exams while still providing access to necessary applications, such as online code editors or advanced calculator or spreadsheet applications. Whitelisting allows for new uses of WISEflow in several different kinds of exams, including computer science, maths and economics, while keeping the integrity of the secure protocols of the exam intact.
We also made significant advances regarding integration, as we improved the integration possibilities for BlackBoard, Canvas, Moodle and others through Question Import.
Communication is an essential activity in exams and assessment, which is why we developed a new message center with more opportunity for customisation for the individual educational institutions.
With Copy Flow, we have made management much easier for exam administrators. As an exam administrator, you can copy your flows and flows where you have been added as a manager.
These were only some of the many new additions to WISEflow during the two major releases of 2018. With all the new functionalities, WISEflow has been made even more workflow-supportive. We hope our users enjoys these changes in their daily work.
2018 was also the year of GDPR and the compliance to this regulatory framework was the subject line of most emails sent around May. For the WISEflow platform, changes were few to none, as WISEflow has been developed according to the principle of ‘privacy by design’ since its inception, and always uses anonymised data and does not use PII (Personal Identifiable Information).
Looking forward: What does 2019 have in store for WISEflow?
With the rise in interest from the UK, we expect to start an independent office and R&D-center in the UK in the first half of 2019. The purpose of this is to have better and closer contact and support to the growing number of UK institutions using WISEflow. The new UK office also permits our Scandinavian offices to provide more undivided attention to our Scandinavian and German users.
2019 will also be the last year of our research and development project OMAP (Online Massive Assess
ment Platform). In collaboration with Korean WeDu Communications and Centre for Teaching and Learning, Aarhus University, the project has aimed to create high end authentication and learning analytics functionality for WISEflow. The result of this project will among others be:
• Facial Recognition: In the future, facial recognition technology will be instituted in WISEflow, making authentication both incredibly fast and easy and additionally secure. This way it becomes even easier to conduct secure on-site digital exams for a massive number of students.
• Research-based Learning Analytics: Student exam activity generates a large amount of data and we have been working hard on how to utilise this information to the greatest benefit of students and educational institutions. One of the approaches we have undertaken is to look into learning strategies and their relevance for exam. Based on data regarding student study habits and preparations before exams, used exam forms and achieved results of exams, we are currently investigating the relevance of such data for individual and institution, as well as the proper feedback this can instigate. This is done together with Centre for Teaching and Learning, Aarhus University.
Mark your calendars for September 2019
As a final reveal, we will be hosting a major event in September: WISECON 2019.
WISECON 2019 will be an international WISEflow user conference for our customers and partners, taking place on the 4th and 5th of September 2019.
We are currently hard at work creating an exciting two-day program for our guests. We will not reveal the location just yet, but it is a quite unusual venue – its number of bricks is considerably higher than other buildings…
Thank you for an inspiring year
2018 was the most exciting year yet for UNIwise, and we would like to say thank you to all of our users.
We look forward to another year, breaking even more records and providing our users with an even better work and learning experience.
We also look forward to a year of new friends, new offices, new functionality and most of all: seeing you all to WISECON in September.
Best wishes for 2019,
Steffen Skovfoged and Rasmus Blok,
Founders and Executive Directors at UNIwise