It’s appears truer then ever that a rolling stone gathers no moss as Rosetta Stone follows its recent acquisition of Livemocha by taking on the services and systems of Lexia Learning. The $22.5 million deal represents Rosetta Stone’s leading edge strategy of moving towards being an education solutions provider in U.S. schools as opposed to exclusively language learning materials.
Lexia Learning has been delivering digital support for K-12 literacy curricula for over a quarter of a century. Its personalised learning approach is based on foundational reading skills. Their versatile, tech-based system is capable of predicting a learner’s end-of-year reading abilities whilst also providing educators with data-rich performance information to aid in differentiating lesson content. Lexia’s recent release of an iPad app for early years readers also signals their competency in adopting the blended learning approach for young learners in tablet-enabled classrooms.
So, what’s behind Rosetta Stone’s decision to take on the literacy-centred company when they’ve historically been providing digital language learning courses? The acquisition ensures Rosetta Stone a slice of the expanding edtech market in K-12 schools. Schools across the U.S. have started to experiment with providing young learners with tablets as well as delivering online lessons and learning opportunities. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal Rosetta Stone’s Chief Executive Officer Steve Swad disclosed that the he was “evolving the company from a language company to a learning company.”
This can be argued to be both providing learning opportunities as well as demonstrating its own ability to learn from what the market is doing. Following an extensive round of customer surveys, Rosetta Stone execs discovered that a large number of customers believe (incorrectly) that the company already provides music, maths and reading products. Mr. Swad interpreted this misunderstanding as “evidence of brand permission to extend.”
When it comes to what your customers expectations are in the edtech realm, it seems that nothing is written in stone.