Monday, April 25, 2011

Sapling Brings Interactive Science Lessons to High School

Sapling Learning is a developer of electronic homework and assessment software focused specifically on the sciences. The company previously provided its digital learning and testing tools only for higher education, where it's in use by more than 300 professors at 200 individual institutions, according to the company.

Included in the initial lineup for high school students are online versions of Sapling Learning High School Biology, Sapling Learning High School Chemistry, Sapling Learning High School Integrated Physics and Chemistry, and Sapling Learning High School Physics.

The four offerings are designed for students in grades 9 through 12. They were developed specifically to address Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) standards and are aligned with their respective STAAR EOC Blueprints. The online tools offer real-time differentiated coaching, online quizzes, online homework exercises, unit study, and STAAR EOC practice and review.

A company spokesperson said that though the initial offerings are specifically for Texas, the scope of Sapling's move into K-12 will be national.

All four of the initial packages are available now. Further details can be found here.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

Sapling Learning Names Alex von Rosenberg Vice President of Sales & Business Development

von Rosenberg, who has 20 years of successful experience providing high impact solutions to higher education customers, will oversee all sales and business development functions at Sapling Learning

AUSTIN, TEXAS — Seasoned publishing and education business executive Alex von Rosenberg recently joined Sapling Learning as vice president of sales & business development.

Over the past two years, Sapling Learning has quickly expanded to become one of the leading providers of interactive homework and assessment software for the Higher Education sciences. von Rosenberg, an award winning entrepreneur and former executive of both Thomson and Pearson,, will drive continued growth for Sapling Learning as he oversees sales and business development functions at Sapling Learning.

"I look forward to this new challenge to help drive growth and develop relationships for Sapling Learning," von Rosenberg said. "Everyone at Sapling is passionate about their ability to provide engaging interactive content that dramatically improves student comprehension and retention, while saving students on the cost of education. To become part of the Sapling team and share this passion is an unbelievable opportunity. I've been privileged to work closely with Sapling management on a variety of projects over the past two years. It's clear that the company is transformational and I'm thrilled to spearhead the company's sales and business development efforts."

von Rosenberg comes to Sapling Learning after most recently serving as the executive director of sales and marketing at Aplia, a division of Cengage Learning. von Rosenberg served as a key member of the executive team at both Aplia and Cengage Learning's Digital Solutions Group. At Cengage Learning, von Rosenberg was also deeply involved in International markets through his leadership of the Global Publishing Task Force. Prior to those roles he was editor in chief at Thomson Learning, where he drove digital transformations that led to market leading growth in the business disciplines.

von Rosenberg has also been involved in a number of entrepreneurial ventures. He was the sole founder of Atomic Dog Publishing, which was recognized for its significant entrepreneurial accomplishments by various sources, including the State of Ohio‘s Trailblazer Award for Innovations in E-Commerce; besting runner-ups Lexis/Nexis and GE Aircraft Engines; Eduventures' 100 Most Influential Education Companies and one of eight notable innovators; and by Ernst & Young as a finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year.

von Rosenberg has led or worked with business development teams that have been at the forefront of the move to digital solutions. In particular, Atomic Dog Publishing, Aplia, and Sapling Learning; all represent companies that were wholly focused on using digital tools to improve student engagement, student performance, and affordable access to quality content.

von Rosenberg began his career at West Publishing in 1991 as a sales representative, and finished his tenure there as the number two representative in the company. In 1997, he was Editor-of-the-Year for South-Western/Thomson.

"Alex will focus his efforts on developing Sapling Learning's unified sales strategy and approach to expand our presence throughout the higher education and K-12 markets," said James Caras, Ph.D., CEO, Sapling Learning. "Alex's experience in the publishing and education markets and his leadership will help us further build relationships and drive sales as we continue to develop innovative solutions for instructors' and students' needs."

von Rosenberg has a B.S. in Economics from Texas A&M and an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Sapling Learning Launches Interactive General Chemistry eBook for Higher Education

AUSTIN, TX — Sapling Learning, a leader in interactive homework and assessment software for the Higher Education sciences, is pleased to announce the launch and availability of its new eBook, Olmsted and Williams' Chemistry, 5th edition. In publishing this eBook, Sapling Learning's goals are to provide a fully integrated interactive eBook and homework solution that saves students 50% or more on textbook costs.

Like all the Sapling Learning products, the Chemistry, 5th edition eBook by Olmsted and Williams will provide engaging interactive content that dramatically improves student comprehension and retention. Students will work problems directly within their eBook as they read. For the first time ever instructors can monitor how students are proceeding on assigned reading in real time. Further, faculty and departments can use Sapling's unparalleled content authoring tools to edit and customize the eBook, as well as any in-chapter practice problems, easily tailoring the eBook to meet the specific needs of their students.

When asked about the eBook, James Caras, Ph.D., CEO of Sapling Learning, said, "I visit hundreds of college campuses each year. Overwhelmingly, students are fed up with paying hundreds of dollars for static print textbooks that they primarily use as a reference. They want a high quality, cost effective eBook like Olmsted and Williams' Chemistry 5th edition that is seamlessly integrated with online homework. Ultimately, students value the experience of working problems and getting immediate and specific feedback on their performance which is what Sapling Learning delivers."

The Integrated Olmsted and Williams Chemistry, 5th edition eBook and Online Homework Solution from Sapling Learning is available for $39.99 a semester, or $70.00 for two semesters,. In addition to being a cost effective solution, it has far fewer restrictions than other publishers' eBooks. Where most eBooks are assigned digital rights management (DRM), the Sapling Learning eBook is not. Students can print all or portions of the eBook as they like at no additional charge. Sapling Learning offers print-on-demand services that will deliver a printed copy of Olmsted and Williams Chemistry, 5th edition to the college bookstore or to a student's mailbox. Alternatively, enterprising universities can print and sell the text to their students.

According to a study conducted for the Gates Foundation, textbook costs have a real impact on students' ability to complete coursework. Sixty percent of students who did not graduate report that textbooks and other fees besides tuition affected them; 58 percent of those who graduated cited the same.