ePals, Inc., a provider of schoolsafe collaborative learning products for K12 classrooms and homes, has introduced Ask ePals, a free Web service that brings together educators, experts, and people looking for answers to questions about education-related issues.
Collaborating with Yedda.com, a social search question and answer platform, ePals offers the Web service as an easy way for anyone to locate resources, content, professional development tips, advice, and more about education related topics. With Ask ePals, educators and others can share their knowledge with teachers, parents, and students, as well as seek the advice of others. The service is available either at www.epals.com/askepals or through Web pages that embed the widget capability.
A teacher using Ask ePals might ask, for example, “What software would you recommend to read text to my vision impaired student?” Using Yedda’s semantic matching technology, this question will be intelligently routed to relevant Ask ePals members with expertise in the topic. This will start a community-wide dialog of members invited to discuss and learn from each other’s experience. With members querying the community instead of merely searching for Web content, this “social search” of the Ask ePals community activates knowledge resident within community members for the benefit of the entire community. If the question asker is an expert in, for example, dyslexia in early readers, they can easily serve as a resource on that or other topics.
Educators, industry experts and Web site operators can take advantage of the new tool by adding an Ask ePals widget – an interactive tool that provides easy access to the Ask ePals functions – to their school Web site, blog, home page, or destination. This offers a way for parents and students to join the community, ask questions, share their expertise, explore, and learn. The Ask ePals Web service has been tested in the ePals education community since March of 2007, and is now being made available to Web users and developers globally.
Unlike other question and answer services on the Web today, Ask ePals taps into the collective knowledge of the ePals knowledge community and makes that expertise accessible to everyday people anywhere online.
For more information, or to take a tour of Ask ePals, visit www.epals.com/askepals.
Source: ePals, Inc., www.epalscorp.com