Some of you may be wondering what Packback has been up to lately. About a year ago, we claimed space in our own office in Chicago’s South Loop and introduced our 1.0 platform, Packback Answers.
Shortly after, in the Summer of 2016, we launched our 2.0 platform, Packback Questions. We shared about this update back in August, including the feature tab, how the clusters feature makes every class size feel intimate, information about our community management and a tutorial for new users to Packback Questions.
So what have we been up to since August? We’re glad you asked!
Packback Questions, our 2.0 platform, has continued to evolve to give our professors and students the best experience, no matter how large their class may be. Here are a couple of new features we’ve introduced over the last six months:
Every post on Packback earns a unique point score from an algorithm that was created with deep testing and refinement against the “human” grading that our R&D team members assigned to thousands of posts. From this data, we distilled the commonalities amongst high-quality posts and the behaviors of top users. The Packback Curiosity Scoring Algorithm currently scores individual posts based on 3 main criteria: Presentation, Credibility and Effort.
The long-term goal of this algorithm is to continue to push the limits of what Packback members can do in their communities.
It drives friendly competition between members, helps to make professors’ lives a little easier when grading and gives students feedback about their curious questions and insightful responses.
It will continue to be refined, researched and improved upon as our members continue to redefine what it means to be a curious mind.
Real-Time Coaching provides feedback and coaching on a post before it’s even published. This gives students the opportunity to immediately learn from and apply feedback to craft their best question or answer. It’s there to guide students any time of the day or night and is meant to be an additional coaching mechanism on top of professor feedback.
The ultimate goal of Packback’s Real-Time Coaching is to equip every Packback user with the tools and knowledge about how to ask a truly great question and how to develop the most insightful response on their own.
This in turn, enhances students’ critical thinking and analytic skills; both of which are in high demand from employers.
With our initial rollout of Packback Questions, we had about 5,000 students curiously using the platform. This semester, we’re thrilled to see almost four times that number at 19,000 students using Packback Questions!
Not only has our Packback community grown, but so has our Packback team in order to continue to meet needs of our professors and students. In just one year, our team has doubled to 24 full time employees!
Our office space has grown as well. Our office space in Chicago’s South Loop has more than doubled from 2,500 square feet to now 5,700 square feet. With this expansion, we’re proud to be able to house another startup called Tide Spin. You can read more about them here. They’re a Procter & Gamble backed company providing on-demand laundry services.
We couldn’t be more excited about what the future at Packback will bring! In 2017 we’re looking forward to continuing to increase curiosity inside and outside the classroom, taking the curiosity we see on the platform and translating it into an experience to help students find a career best suited for them.
To learn more about Packback and our vision for future learners, click here.