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Ministries and Departments of Education, international donor agencies, philanthropists, school systems of various sizes, communities, parents and caregivers are frequently on the lookout for smart investments that will improve learning outcomes for the children and youth in their purview and care. When it comes to making such choices around the use of technology in education, the breadth of choice can be dizzying, and the pace of change only seems to accelerate. As the World Bank’s Michael Trucano recently noted on this topic, however, sometimes “The riskiest course of action might well be one where people and institutions don't take risks.”

With respect to various technologies used for education, there is no shortage of risk taking. Globally, investments in learning technology for the first half of 2015 have reached historic highs, already surpassing the sum of similar spending in all of 2014 (See this report from Ambient Insight). Though much of this spending is not directly made in lower income countries, many of the technologies included in this statistic are indicative of the types that will soon be (or already are) tested in lower income contexts in the hopes of improving education where it’s most lacking.

A fruit market in Tehran.  Image courtesy of Franco Pecchio (Creative Commons 2.0 Attribution)

ICT4E is a ripe marketplace where choice abounds.  Image courtesy of Franco Pecchio (CC 2.0).

So what are the emerging trends in this field, and how can one best make sense of it all to improve learning outcomes for the world’s poor? That is the question the Center for Education Innovations seeks to answer, and the CEI’s recent Database at a Glance on educational technology highlights emerging trends and promising efforts across the globe.

Tangerine’s inclusion in CEI’s database is on the list of “Emerging Technology Models.” As described by CEI, Tangerine “allows educators to focus more on students’ performance and results data rather than on the data collection process.” We couldn’t have put it better ourselves, and we’re proud to be included in the CEI’s vast and valuable array of projects, people and powerful tools serving the improvement of learning outcomes worldwide.