By definition, learning is an interactive endeavor that depends on access to accurate information presented in a familiar and easy-to-digest format. With the rise of advanced e-learning platforms like Edgenuity, this process has moved largely to the digital space where it’s possible to use multimedia for explanatory purpose. Modern educational tools are faster, more engaging to use, and better adjusted to the cognitive style of the younger generation.
While the benefits of cloud-based, integrated teaching and testing platforms are quite clear, there are some concerns about the unprecedented level of access to personal information they are granted. Learners who depend on Edgenuity to improve their grades are sometimes wary of being recorded, since they wouldn’t like their mistakes to go public. Since there is some confusion regarding what Edgenuity records and in which situation that occurs, we tried to explain this issue from several angles and answer the dilemma once and for all.
This is one of the pioneering online learning tools that was originally launched under the name Education 2020 way back in 1988 by Imagine Learning. Designed as a teaching aid for students up to 12th grade, it supports all elements of the curriculum and conforms to all relevant educational standards on the state and national level in the US. At the same time, the platform makes good use of real-world examples and tries to evoke natural curiosity in students and motivate them to learn more.
Edgenuity became more popular over the past decade and is now used by a large number of schools. In particular, it was used to deliver remote teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdowns that kept the schools closed. During this time the software acquired a huge number of new users, but reactions from students and parents were mixed, with some criticizing less responsive service that resulted from too much traffic on Edgenuity’s servers.
One of the greatest benefits of Edgenuity is that is helps slower students catch up with the rest of the class and lets them learn in a way that suits them the best. It also creates opportunities for 1-1 work that may be hard to come by in a crowded classroom. That’s why this e-learning platform remains as relevant as it ever was, especially as it continues to adapt to demand and introduce technological improvements such as artificial intelligence.
The best way to describe Edgenuity is to label it as an image learning tool that uses visual references to present facts. To put it simply, this platform illustrates key topics with visual examples from real life, making it easier to understand complex natural phenomena and scientific terminology. The lectures are presented in the form of online videos that can be watched as many times as needed, paused and replayed, and discussed with others online.
Since Edgenuity is an interactive platform, it enables two-way communication between the teacher and the students, with a direct and personalized connection between them. Tutors can go over the more difficult lessons with their wards, prepare the students for the exams, and direct them to complete interactive tasks related to specific lectures. Since it eliminates peer pressure and puts the student in a more comfortable position, Edgenuity basically represents a digital extension of the classroom and complements traditional teaching activities in a very important way.
There is no doubt that Edgenuity can be a valuable learning tool when it’s used with a plan and in combination with great in-person teaching skills. However, the merging of the students’ personal space with the educational agenda has some unintended implications that need to be considered. Since the platform has access to the student’s computer, some users fear that it might be secretly recording their screen as well as their faces and voices.
For all those asking does Edgenuity record your screen, the answer is that it does so only at specific times that you can predict in advance. More precisely, Edgenuity records screen activity during the testing stage but not while the student is watching videos or practicing with a tutor. The software tries to be minimally invasive towards the students’ privacy and only records their screens when there is a clear reason to do so. Thus, users shouldn’t be worried about any clandestine data harvesting or pervasive spying.
All teaching and testing methods have to account for the small percentage of learners who are willing to break the rules in order to get better grades. This is why Edgenuity monitors all screen activity during the exams, eliminating the possibility to cheat by researching the answers on the internet. There is also a built-in plagiarism checker that will detect any text copied without a quotation. Thanks to these tools, Edgenuity is fairly effective at deterring attempts at cheating and catching those that still occur.
However, new technologies continue to pose problems for online learning systems. The development of generative AI tools enables unscrupulous students to bypass some of the traditional anti-cheating systems and turn in computer-generated essays. That’s why it’s very interesting to see how Edgenuity will evolve to respond to new threats to the integrity of its evaluation system.
1. Who are the primary beneficiaries of using Edgenuity to teach standard curriculum?
Considering that Edgenuity is a broad-spectrum solution for K-12 education with 4 million of US students actively using it, the number of direct beneficiaries is huge. The greatest benefits are felt by academically challenged students that previously had trouble keeping up with their peers.
2. Why does Edgenuity record screen activity during exams?
In situations when it’s very important to prevent cheating (i.e. midterm exams or final exams), Edgenuity gives teachers the ability to track what the students are doing on their computers. This screen recording activity is transparent and agreed upon, so it doesn’t constitute a breach of privacy.
3. Can Edgenuity eavesdrop on you by stealthily recording the input from your microphone?
No, this doesn’t occur under any circumstances. Edgenuity doesn’t have access to either your microphone or your camera and can only track what you are doing on your computer, not in real life. Any fears about Edgenuity being a tool for spying on students are completely unfounded.
Despite serving a hugely important role for decades, Edgenuity is not broadly known by the general public. Combating popular misconceptions about it is very important in order to facilitate faster pace of adoption and break down the resistance some students might be displaying towards it. In this sense, it should be noted that Edgenuity records the user’s screen only during major tests and that it never captures their voices or faces. There is nothing nefarious about Edgenuity and users should rest assured their privacy will be respected when they are interacting with this e-learning platform.