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driving digital courseware education technology and assessment for leading learning company

Driving Digital Courseware, Education Technology & Assessment for a Leading Learning Company

Case Study
  • Business Information Services

The education and learning landscape looks vastly different than it did 25 years ago. Learners’ expectations have evolved, and with it, content publishers, educational companies and assessment providers had to transform their business models to keep up. Since 1995, EPAM has been working with one of the world’s leading learning companies that delivers content, assessment and digital services to learners, educational institutions, employers and governments around the world. From developing the client’s first digital education products and building software applications to providing enterprise data and cloud services, we’ve helped our client become the premier global provider of educational content and assessment services.

Fast Facts

10+
PRODUCT LINES

200+
TEXTBOOKS AUTHORED
WITH STEM CONTENT 

2,000+
INTERACTIVE ASSETS &
TOOLS DEVELOPED

100,000+
ALTERNATIVE TEXT ITEMS CREATED
FOR ACCESSIBILITY

500,000+
CONTENT ITEMS
DELIVERED

Our History

1995
BEGAN COLLABORATION ON CLIENT’S FIRST DIGITAL EDUCATION PRODUCT

2000
CONTENT DEVELOPMENT FOR TWO OF THE CLIENT’S MAJOR ASSESSMENT PLATFORMS

2006
EPAM INCLUDED ON CLIENT’S PREFERRED VENDOR LIST

2012
FIRST ENGINEERING PROJECTS FOR CLIENT’S MAJOR PLATFORMS

2016
EPAM BECAME A PREFERRED VENDOR FOR ACCESSIBILITY SERVICES; PLATFORM QA ENGAGEMENT BEGINS

2019
SAP COMMERCE CLOUD (HYBRIS), DATA GOVERNANCE & GOOGLE CLOUD PROJECTS

2020
DEVELOPMENT OF AI-BASED PERSONALIZED LEARNING SOLUTIONS

2021
DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT OF A DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER PROGRAM

2022
EPAM BECAME ONE OF THE PRIMARY END-TO-END CONTENT VENDORS

Where We Are Now

Global educational product design and development

Enterprise platforms architecture and engineering

Direct-to-consumer strategy design
and implementation

Over the last 25+ years, EPAM has been by the client’s side – navigating the changing learning landscape and helping the company continually innovate, transform into a digital education provider and build next-gen solutions for learners, educational institutions, employers and governments around the globe.

Today, EPAM’s unique combination of learning content expertise, engineering excellence and experience design helps to provide end-to-end services across the client’s global digital channels, including interactive courseware platforms, AI-based products and B2C solutions. We're proud that our client has been recognized with several industry awards for our work together.

EPAM’s Global Hybrid Team

STRATEGY & INNOVATION
CONSULTANTS

SOFTWARE ARCHITECTS
& ENGINEERS

BUSINESS & PROCESS
ANALYSTS

DIGITAL EXPERIENCE
CONSULTANTS

PRODUCT OWNERS

CONTENT STRATEGISTS
& AUTHORS

CYBERSECURITY ARCHITECTS

DEVTESTSECOPS ENGINEERS

DATA SCIENTISTS

Tech Stack

Project Highlights

Direct-to-Consumer Program Strategy & Implementation

DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER PROGRAM STRATEGY & IMPLEMENTATION

As the share of B2C products in the EdTech market has grown, the client engaged EPAM to spearhead its direct-to-consumer strategy and help re-imagine and launch multiple digital product initiatives.

This project required EPAM to engage its full breadth of services, including innovation consulting, product management, experience strategy and design, e-commerce implementation, learning platforms and tools integration, security and optimization, and data and analytics.

One of the objectives was to create a new EdTech subscription portal. EPAM built a complex digital experience platform based on SAP Commerce Cloud (Hybris) and MACH architecture. Our multidisciplinary teams worked in overlapping delivery cycles to ensure a fast time-to-market. Over the first three months from release, with 24x7 automated monitoring in place, no major incidents and system failures occurred.

After just 12 months from ideation to release, the client saw the following results:

  • 1M+ orders placed within the first month after the release
  • 2M active users
  • 24% YoY increase in order volumes 
Assessment Content & Platforms

ASSESSMENT CONTENT & PLATFORMS

One of the client’s key competitive advantages is its assessment platforms with various problem types that test students on their knowledge and skills through homework and exams. Over the course of our partnership, EPAM’s learning content and subject-matter experts have helped the client grow and extend their library of the assessment assets, evolving the problem types in complexity to be more interactive, media-rich and engaging.

EPAM reengineered and enhanced the client’s content authoring software to expand the variety of problem-solving tasks. Moreover, we brainstormed, designed and developed unique accessible authoring tools for discipline-specific, complex problem types, as well as added functional specifications and documentation for the new and existing tool suite.

To implement automated student response assessment, we worked with the client to update its grading engines, designing them specifically for the complex STEM disciplines. After the update, the auto-grading engines could assess not only basic multiple choice and true/false answers, but also robust subject-specific graphing, formula entry and other interactive problem types. We also enhanced existing questions by writing and adding specific content features like step-by-step tutorials, answer-specific feedback, hints and other supplementary material.

By developing and maintaining thousands of content items each year, we continue to work with the client to continually enrich the learning experience on its assessment platforms.

Accessibility Enablement

ACCESSIBILITY ENABLEMENT

As accessibility regulations came into effect, the company needed to ensure its digital content was accessible to all students. EPAM put together a team of SMEs and engineers to transform the client’s legacy content and technology into an accessible design across every device and channel. Since 2016, EPAM has been the client’s go-to partner for accessibility projects, including content and systems audit, accessibility consulting and implementation. Some examples of this work include:

  • Developing content and tools compliant with WCAG 2.0/2.1 requirements (Level AA) from scratch
  • Building support for screen reader, speech input and zooming
  • Designing 100,000+ alt texts for images of various complexity, hotspots for vector drawing questions, complex assessment types, feedbacks, interactive simulations and eBooks
  • Building multiple interactive graphic tools that allow for the authoring of accessible problem items and interactive assets across the client’s platforms
  • Integrating accessibility standards into the client’s microsites
AI-based Personalized Learning Products

AI-BASED PERSONALIZED LEARNING PRODUCTS

Aiming to position itself as a leader in the learner-centric mobile experiences, the client partnered with EPAM to design and develop two next-gen, AI-powered direct-to-consumer products. For one mobile application, EPAM developed a successful PoC to check the feasibility of deep learning algorithms for the assessment engine. For another app, we developed machine learning (ML) algorithms that analyze user-generated data and build a personalized learning path for each student based on individual performance.

Both mobile apps recognize and analyze student’s inputs and provide feedback and studying recommendations with links to the client’s content library. As a result, the apps help tutors save time and effort required for homework checks while students still receive instant personalized feedback – an essential benefit in the remote learning.

In both products, EPAM used a cross-platform native approach for mobile, supported by microservices architecture for reliability and scalability. We configured the infrastructure layer based on Google Cloud and used Google Flutter to ensure a modern look and feel. With these learner-centric applications powered by the latest technologies, students gain a truly personalized learning experience on their mobile devices.

Editorial & QA Services

EDITORIAL & QA SERVICES

The educational materials provided by the client require meticulous checks for theoretical accuracy, reasoning, notation, equations and calculations delivered within tight deadlines. To ensure high standards of quality, EPAM used a multi-step verification process to eliminate errors across the client’s assessments, adding a critical layer of precision to support the complexity of the client’s curricula. With our expertise in software engineering and testing combined with our deep knowledge of the client’s development environment, EPAM provides not only accuracy checks, but also functional and load testing on the client’s assessment platforms.

Data Governance on the Cloud

DATA GOVERNANCE ON THE CLOUD

The client wanted to modernize and optimize its data governance and development processes to improve scalability on the cloud. Tapping into its extensive data, analytics and cloud expertise, EPAM designed a new data governance platform presenting the client with a modern architecture blueprint and data frameworks, which enabled no-code data pipelines to save on development costs. Additionally, our team built a Google Cloud-based foundation for the new data governance platform. Throughout the process, we automated infrastructure-as-a-code and CI/CD pipelines for several product teams, as well as implemented multiple security improvements.

Digital Marketplace Design & Implementation

DIGITAL MARKETPLACE DESIGN & IMPLEMENTATION

To continue penetrating the emerging consumer EdTech market, the client decided to extend its direct-to-learner portfolio with a digital marketplace for high-end educational programs that guides users through the research, evaluation, decision-making and application process.

Leveraging Adobe Experience Manager, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud, EPAM developed a highly scalable direct-to-consumer platform in just three months that integrated 10+ systems, including Salesforce Sales Cloud, a recommendation engine and catalogue with 200+ learning programs. The solution allowed learners to determine the right academic partner that matches their unique needs. While creating an engaging user experience on the front-end, EPAM also simplified the authoring processes for the client’s content team, enabling them to manage content regardless of IT changes and increase content author efficiency by 20%.

Next, to increase the number of users, EPAM launched a conversion rate optimization (CRO) plan. We implemented in-depth tracking of user behavior coming through different channels using Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager (GTM). Using these insights, we generated hypotheses for A/B testing in Google Optimize. These tested features were then included into the product backlog for new development cycles.

As a result of this data-driven delivery process, the client saw a 4x increase in end-to-end conversion rate improvement (from the website visitors to submitted applications).

Interactive Courseware Development

INTERACTIVE COURSEWARE DEVELOPMENT

Across the span of our partnership, EPAM has developed over 2,000 interactive tools, widgets, simulations and animations in various qualitative and social disciplines – from economics and finance to life sciences and medicine to physics and math to engineering and computer science.

The projects vary in complexity – from conversion of existing content from legacy technologies into HTML5 to creating standalone activities from scratch. Some of these initiatives include developing graphing tools with both student and author modes, flash-card applications, 3D tools to render models, simulations of physics experiments, accessible microsites for teachers, math animations, various tutorials and more.

Our team often handled the full cycle of development – creating storyboards and art designs, developing animations and interactivities, producing student and teacher guides, and integrating packaged simulations, labs and widgets into the client’s courseware. When developing interactive and media-rich content, we ensure it is interoperable, functions properly, meets pedagogical and accessibility standards and has a responsive, engaging and intuitive design across every device and channel.

Project Highlights

 

DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER PROGRAM STRATEGY & IMPLEMENTATION

As the share of B2C products in the EdTech market has grown, the client engaged EPAM to spearhead its direct-to-consumer strategy and help re-imagine and launch multiple digital product initiatives.

This project required EPAM to engage its full breadth of services, including innovation consulting, product management, experience strategy and design, e-commerce implementation, learning platforms and tools integration, security and optimization, and data and analytics.

One of the objectives was to create a new EdTech subscription portal. EPAM built a complex digital experience platform based on SAP Commerce Cloud (Hybris) and MACH architecture. Our multidisciplinary teams worked in overlapping delivery cycles to ensure a fast time-to-market. Over the first three months from release, with 24x7 automated monitoring in place, no major incidents and system failures occurred.

After just 12 months from ideation to release, the client saw the following results:

  • 1M+ orders placed within the first month after the release
  • 2M active users
  • 24% YoY increase in order volumes

 

AI-BASED PERSONALIZED LEARNING PRODUCTS

Aiming to position itself as a leader in the learner-centric mobile experiences, the client partnered with EPAM to design and develop two next-gen, AI-powered direct-to-consumer products. For one mobile application, EPAM developed a successful PoC to check the feasibility of deep learning algorithms for the assessment engine. For another app, we developed machine learning (ML) algorithms that analyze user-generated data and build a personalized learning path for each student based on individual performance.

Both mobile apps recognize and analyze student’s inputs and provide feedback and studying recommendations with links to the client’s content library. As a result, the apps help tutors save time and effort required for homework checks while students still receive instant personalized feedback – an essential benefit in the remote learning.

In both products, EPAM used a cross-platform native approach for mobile, supported by microservices architecture for reliability and scalability. We configured the infrastructure layer based on Google Cloud and used Google Flutter to ensure a modern look and feel. With these learner-centric applications powered by the latest technologies, students gain a truly personalized learning experience on their mobile devices.

 

DIGITAL MARKETPLACE DESIGN & IMPLEMENTATION

To continue penetrating the emerging consumer EdTech market, the client decided to extend its direct-to-learner portfolio with a digital marketplace for high-end educational programs that guides users through the research, evaluation, decision-making and application process.

Leveraging Adobe Experience Manager, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud, EPAM developed a highly scalable direct-to-consumer platform in just three months that integrated 10+ systems, including Salesforce Sales Cloud, a recommendation engine and catalogue with 200+ learning programs. The solution allowed learners to determine the right academic partner that matches their unique needs. While creating an engaging user experience on the front-end, EPAM also simplified the authoring processes for the client’s content team, enabling them to manage content regardless of IT changes and increase content author efficiency by 20%.

Next, to increase the number of users, EPAM launched a conversion rate optimization (CRO) plan. We implemented in-depth tracking of user behavior coming through different channels using Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager (GTM). Using these insights, we generated hypotheses for A/B testing in Google Optimize. These tested features were then included into the product backlog for new development cycles.

As a result of this data-driven delivery process, the client saw a 4x increase in end-to-end conversion rate improvement (from the website visitors to submitted applications).

 

ASSESSMENT CONTENT & PLATFORMS

One of the client’s key competitive advantages is its assessment platforms with various problem types that test students on their knowledge and skills through homework and exams. Over the course of our partnership, EPAM’s learning content and subject-matter experts have helped the client grow and extend their library of the assessment assets, evolving the problem types in complexity to be more interactive, media-rich and engaging.

EPAM reengineered and enhanced the client’s content authoring software to expand the variety of problem-solving tasks. Moreover, we brainstormed, designed and developed unique accessible authoring tools for discipline-specific, complex problem types, as well as added functional specifications and documentation for the new and existing tool suite.

To implement automated student response assessment, we worked with the client to update its grading engines, designing them specifically for the complex STEM disciplines. After the update, the auto-grading engines could assess not only basic multiple choice and true/false answers, but also robust subject-specific graphing, formula entry and other interactive problem types. We also enhanced existing questions by writing and adding specific content features like step-by-step tutorials, answer-specific feedback, hints and other supplementary material.

By developing and maintaining thousands of content items each year, we continue to work with the client to continually enrich the learning experience on its assessment platforms.

 

EDITORIAL & QA SERVICES

The educational materials provided by the client require meticulous checks for theoretical accuracy, reasoning, notation, equations and calculations delivered within tight deadlines. To ensure high standards of quality, EPAM used a multi-step verification process to eliminate errors across the client’s assessments, adding a critical layer of precision to support the complexity of the client’s curricula. With our expertise in software engineering and testing combined with our deep knowledge of the client’s development environment, EPAM provides not only accuracy checks, but also functional and load testing on the client’s assessment platforms.

 

INTERACTIVE COURSEWARE DEVELOPMENT

Across the span of our partnership, EPAM has developed over 2,000 interactive tools, widgets, simulations and animations in various qualitative and social disciplines – from economics and finance to life sciences and medicine to physics and math to engineering and computer science.

The projects vary in complexity – from conversion of existing content from legacy technologies into HTML5 to creating standalone activities from scratch. Some of these initiatives include developing graphing tools with both student and author modes, flash-card applications, 3D tools to render models, simulations of physics experiments, accessible microsites for teachers, math animations, various tutorials and more.

Our team often handled the full cycle of development – creating storyboards and art designs, developing animations and interactivities, producing student and teacher guides, and integrating packaged simulations, labs and widgets into the client’s courseware. When developing interactive and media-rich content, we ensure it is interoperable, functions properly, meets pedagogical and accessibility standards and has a responsive, engaging and intuitive design across every device and channel.

 

ACCESSIBILITY ENABLEMENT

As accessibility regulations came into effect, the company needed to ensure its digital content was accessible to all students. EPAM put together a team of SMEs and engineers to transform the client’s legacy content and technology into an accessible design across every device and channel. Since 2016, EPAM has been the client’s go-to partner for accessibility projects, including content and systems audit, accessibility consulting and implementation. Some examples of this work include:

  • Developing content and tools compliant with WCAG 2.0/2.1 requirements (Level AA) from scratch
  • Building support for screen reader, speech input and zooming
  • Designing 100,000+ alt texts for images of various complexity, hotspots for vector drawing questions, complex assessment types, feedbacks, interactive simulations and eBooks
  • Building multiple interactive graphic tools that allow for the authoring of accessible problem items and interactive assets across the client’s platforms
  • Integrating accessibility standards into the client’s microsites

 

DATA GOVERNANCE ON THE CLOUD

The client wanted to modernize and optimize its data governance and development processes to improve scalability on the cloud. Tapping into its extensive data, analytics and cloud expertise, EPAM designed a new data governance platform presenting the client with a modern architecture blueprint and data frameworks, which enabled no-code data pipelines to save on development costs. Additionally, our team built a Google Cloud-based foundation for the new data governance platform. Throughout the process, we automated infrastructure-as-a-code and CI/CD pipelines for several product teams, as well as implemented multiple security improvements.

Interested in learning more about EPAM’s EdTech expertise?
Contact us at el@epam.com.

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