Amplify (company)

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Industry Education
Predecessor Wireless Generation
Founded New York (2012 (2012))

55 Washington Street Suite 900

Brooklyn, NY 11201-1071
Key people
Products Amplify Tablet, digital curriculum, assessments, consultations
Parent News Corp

Amplify is the education subsidiary of News Corp launched in July 2012. Amplify Insight was formed out of Wireless Generation, the educational company bought by News Corp in 2010, and focuses on assessment and analytics for data-driven instruction. Amplify Learning develops a digital curriculum based on the Common Core State Standards. Amplify Access focuses on a tablet-based learning platform for students and teachers.[1]

Company overview[edit]

Amplify was formed after the purchase of Wireless Generation, which was founded in 2000 by Larry Berger and Greg Gunn. The company sold their materials to districts and states that used government funding for early reading and other programs. They also developed and maintained the New York City online warehouse of student data ARIS, and wrote the algorithm for the School of One, the New York City Department of Education's math help system. Larry Berger served as the CEO of Wireless Generation until the sale of the company in 2010. At the time of the sale, the users of Wireless Generation software included three million students and 200,000 educators.[2]

In November 2010 a 90% stake in Wireless Generation was purchased by News Corp for $360 million. News Corp. changed the name of its subsidiary in 2012 to Amplify.[3] Following the acquisition, News Corp. invested about half a billion dollars into the company in order to expand its offerings. Amplify devices and digital curriculum are designed to replace hardcopy textbooks, and to decrease the price-point gap between traditional textbooks and tablet-based education.[4]

Since its founding the CEO of Amplify has been Joel Klein, former chancellor for the New York City Department of Education and an executive vice-president with News Corp. He has stated that the goal of Amplify is to encourage the integration of computer technology into the common educational environment, rather than a separate learning environment such as a laboratory.[5] Berger has taken the position of president for Amplify Learning. Other individuals working on the company's curriculum include Walter Isaacson.[6] Former New Jersey Education Commissioner Chris Cerf is the CEO of Amplify Insight.[7]

Amplify Insight[edit]

Amplify provides assessment tools for K-12 Schools. Tools are available for Math and ELA, Pre-K to 12th Grade. Amplify also provides secure data hosting, reporting and management for educational institutions.[8] Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium signed a contract with Amplify to create a digital library of formative assessment professional learning tools designed for Common Core State Standards teachers. Amplify also signed a contract with Smarter Balanced before its purchase by News Corp to develop reporting tools for teacher assessment.[9] The library provides online access to teachers for formative test items, and assessment tools.[10] Amplify's software uses data analysis to plan teaching tactics and track educational results.[11] This has included the provision of data coaches to teachers in Delaware.[12]

Amplify Learning[edit]

The learning division creates digital curriculum for K-12th Grade for ELA, Math, and Science. These curricula are based upon the Common Core curriculum standards accepted by 41 US states.[4] Amplify technology also includes educational games that can be played by students outside of class time,[8] in addition to 300 pre-loaded books.[13][14] The company also offers an AP Computer Science MOOC.[15]

Amplify Access[edit]

Main article: Amplify Tablet

In March 2013, Amplify released the Amplify Tablet, a customized Asus Android tablet with a suite of subscription-based software, offering education-oriented features and apps designed for K-12 learning environments.[16][17][18] The curriculum and Amplify tablet device are sold separately, and the tablet can hold any other digital curriculum other than Amplify's.[19] In March 2014, the company released a new version of the Amplify Tablet designed by Intel. The software provides real-time updates as to student progress throughout the day to the teacher, so that they can see what students might be struggling or if their lessons might require adjustment in other ways. It also provides the educator with a class-wide blocking or app blocking mechanism to transition the class from tablet work to the lecture, specifically with an alert that states "Eyes On Teacher".[20]


  1. ^ Dawson, Christopher. (2012-07-23) News Corp unveils Amplify: New partnership with AT&T for digital ed. ZDNet. Retrieved on 2013-07-19.
  2. ^ Anna Phillips (November 22, 2010). "Murdoch buys education tech company Wireless Generation". Chalk Beat. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  3. ^ "News Corp brands education business Amplify". AP Online. July 23, 2012. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Travis Andrews (August 29, 2013). "Inside News Corp's $540 Million Bet on American Classrooms". Mashable. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Joel Klein interview". Wall Street Journal. January 18, 2013. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  6. ^ Cailtin Emma (July 5, 2014). "Primary results — New NAEP scores out today — Pre-K bill markup — Rival protests Pearson contract". Politico. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  7. ^ Leslie Brody (February 11, 2014). "N.J. education chief Chris Cerf stepping down". Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  8. ^ a b Amy Chozick (May 6, 2013). "News Corp. Has a Tablet for Schools". New York Times. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  9. ^ Sean Cavanagh (March 14, 2013). "Amplify Insight Wins Contract from Common-Core Testing Consortium". Education Week. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  10. ^ Dian Schaffhauser. "Amplify Insight Creating Digital Library of Assessment Tools for Smarter Balanced". The Journal. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  11. ^ Calvin Reid (December 5, 2012). "News Corp.'s Joel Klein Outlines Plans for Amplify Education Unit". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  12. ^ Michele McNeil (May 25, 2011). "Delaware Pushes to Meet Race to Top Promises". Education Week. 
  13. ^ Jordan Shapiro (March 3, 2014). "Amplify's Middle School Content Makes Learning Look Beautiful". Forbes. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  14. ^ M. Nadeem (September 19, 2013). "Students Offer Tech Support for Amplify Tablet Program". Education News. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  15. ^ Gregory Ferenstein (July 3, 2013). "How A New Free Online Computer Science Course Could Bring College Prep To Everyone". Tech Crunch. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  16. ^ "News Corp. Has a Tablet for Schools". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 October 2013. 
  17. ^ "No Child Left Untableted". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 October 2013. 
  18. ^ "News Corp.'s Amplify Unveils Education Tablet". PC Magazine. Retrieved 9 October 2013. 
  19. ^ Motoko Rich (March 3, 2014). "New All-Digital Curriculums Hope to Ride High-Tech Push in Schoolrooms". New York Times. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  20. ^ Carol Rotella (September 12, 2013). "No Child Left Untableted". New York Times. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 

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