McGraw-Hill Releases New Mobile-First Version of Connect Platform for Higher Education at SXSWedu 2015

Published March 9, 2015

By Communications Team

Now with a new student-centric design optimized for tablets, Connect is the only learning platform containing visual analytics and adaptive technology shown to increase performance

AUSTIN, Texas, March 9, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- McGraw-Hill, the learning science company, today at SXSWedu launched the new mobile-first version of McGraw-Hill Connect®, the company's learning platform for students and instructors in the higher education market. The new release of Connect features a student-centric design optimized for use on tablets via native apps, allowing students to complete assignments, study course material through the SmartBook® adaptive reading experience, and access the Connect Insight analytics dashboard—anytime, anywhere. To provide the most flexible and personal learning experience possible, McGraw-Hill is now offering students who purchase Connect the option of adding a print version of their course content for as low as $15.

Connect makes both studying and class time more engaging and effective by seamlessly integrating high-quality content with enhanced digital tools. The result: a personalized learning experience that provides students with precisely what they need, when they need it. Connect has been shown to deliver better results for students and instructors, leading to gains in test scores, pass rates and student retention.

"When developing the new version of Connect, we spoke with thousands of students and instructors and analyzed billions of data points to learn what we could do to help make teaching and learning more effective and efficient. A mobile-first design built around the student experience was the clear answer," said Stephen Laster, chief digital officer of McGraw-Hill. "By combining a form-factor that suits the way students study today with built-in adaptive technologies shown to increase student performance, the new version of Connect not only improves results, it helps make life easier for students and instructors."

Connect offers students and instructors an array of tools to manage coursework and university life, including:

  • SmartBook and LearnSmart Advantage® Adaptive Technology: Connect contains SmartBook and LearnSmart Advantage adaptive technologies that help students study more effectively and efficiently by continually responding to students' strengths and weaknesses. SmartBook and LearnSmart help students focus their attention on what they need to learn the most, instead of concepts they've already mastered. In response to customer feedback, Connect now allows students to use SmartBook while offline, offering them an even more flexible studying experience.
  • Student and Instructor Analytics: Connect Insight is now available for students, providing students with at-a-glance information about their performance that is immediately actionable. With Connect Insight, students can visualize their performance across courses and take action to improve their grades in specific courses by following steps based on the system's analysis. Connect Insight also provides instructors with insights into individual student performance, assignment completion and scores, and section-by-section comparisons. These insights allow teachers to focus on the subject matter that each class struggles with the most, and offer students personalized support and additional resources to master concepts.
  • Redesigned Student Interface: With a focus on clarity for users, Connect's new user interface features a seamless integration of learning tools, placing most important priorities in the forefront. The dashboard gives students a complete view of assignments and deadlines across courses, allowing students to prioritize tasks that will have the most impact on their performance.
  • Course-Specific Information and Resources: Connect enables students to drill down into individual courses. Students can access course materials and content for each class in a single location, filtered by homework assignments, quizzes, tests, essays and other categories. Connect helps students map out their assignments and provides them with step-by-step processes for completing each assignment's requirements. Students and teachers can also message one another through the portal.

"Connect makes it easier for students to learn at their own pace, master concepts and complete their degree all while arming professors with the insights they need to help with the student retention rate," said Laster. "Connect has seen strong growth in usage and engagement: In 2014, unique users increased 17 percent to 3.0 million, while students submitted 77.9 million student assignments, up 32 percent. And in data compiled from independent research studies, Connect has been shown to increase pass rates by 15 percent and retention rates by 23 percent."

McGraw-Hill will celebrate the launch of the new version of Connect with a reception at its lounge at SXSWedu in Room 406 of the Hilton Austin at 5:30 p.m. CT on Monday, March 9. Stephen Laster will also be taking over McGraw-Hill's Twitter account, @MHEducation, for a Twitter chat live from the lounge at 3:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, March 10 using the hashtag #SXMHE.

For more information about Connect, visit

About McGraw-Hill

McGraw-Hill is a learning science company that delivers personalized learning experiences that help students, parents, educators and professionals improve results. McGraw-Hill has offices across North America, India, China, Europe, the Middle East and South America, and makes its learning solutions available in nearly 60 languages. Visit us at or find us on Facebook or Twitter.

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