SOURCE: Wimba

December 12, 2007 08:00 ET

Five U.K. Institutions to Implement Wimba Collaboration Suite

Technology Combines Best of Face-to-Face and Online Instruction

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - December 12, 2007) - Wimba, the education technology company that helps people teach people, today announced that five additional education institutions in the United Kingdom have become users of Wimba's full suite of innovative education technologies.

U.K. Higher and Further Education institutions that recently upgraded to the Wimba Collaboration Suite include:

--  City College Norwich (CCN)
--  University of the West of England
--  Birmingham City University
--  University of Leeds
--  University of Bristol
    

The Wimba Collaboration Suite helps academic institutions increase student engagement, enhance learning and increase retention.

"We look forward to supporting each of these institutions as they enhance the online learning experiences of their students and instructors," said Wimba Chief Executive Officer Tommaso Trionfi. "Our solutions and international reach enable instructors globally to interact with students in ways that could not occur in a text-based course."

All institutions (apart from CCN) were already using Wimba Create (formerly Wimba Course Genie), an application which converts Microsoft Word documents into content for Angel, Blackboard, Moodle and WebCT courses. By expanding to the Wimba Collaboration Suite, these institutions will be able to offer many more interactive tools including voice, video, podcasting, content authoring and instant messaging. Seamlessly integrated with an institution's virtual learning environment (VLE) / course management system (CMS), Wimba turns static, text-based online courses into rich, interactive experiences that foster more personal, natural connections among the teacher and students.

Instructors consider personal interaction to be central to the teaching and learning process. The Wimba Collaboration Suite, anchored by the Wimba Classroom -- a virtual live classroom -- enables such interaction allowing users to combine state-of-the-art technologies with best pedagogical practices.

University of the West of England is one of the U.K.'s largest universities and has an excellent reputation for teaching as defined by Quality Assurance Agency ratings. University of Leeds and University of Bristol are both a part of the highly prestigious Russell Group, which is an association of 20 major research-intensive universities of the U.K. that aim to promote research efforts and attract the best staff and students to those institutions.

"The Wimba tools have great potential to simplify the way our staff create engaging materials in Blackboard, as well as expand the possibilities beyond simple course handouts," said Chris Boon, Senior ILT Support Analyst, City College of Norwich.

The Wimba Collaboration Suite includes Wimba Classroom, Wimba Pronto, an instant messaging application, Wimba Voice, which facilitates and promotes vocal instruction, and Wimba Create. The Wimba Collaboration Suite works seamlessly within an existing VLE/CMS so instructors never need a new username or password, and never have to leave their familiar online course environments.

About Wimba

Wimba is a company focused solely on education and dedicated to the principle that people learn more when they are drawn closer together. Our collaborative software applications for the online education market enable institutions to bridge technology and pedagogy by supplementing course management systems with many of the proven disciplines of in-person learning environments. Wimba's intuitive solutions enable educators and students to quickly and easily teach and learn live online, engage in live chat and instant message exchanges, benefit from oral content being added to text-based course content, and more. Instructors can also use Wimba solutions to convert Microsoft Word documents into accessible course content and to create and administer tests, quizzes, and exams. Our focus on education and collaboration with educators fuels our product development.

Wimba. People Teach People. www.wimba.com

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