The Knowledge Drive: spreading education globally

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Sally Krutzig & Cory Boyd

News Editor, Contributing Writer

 

In Africa, thousands of children fail to receive the education they need due to the lack of an educational infrastructure. The Knowledge Drive initiative, a joint venture between Books for Africa and Course Hero, Inc., seeks to remedy this problem. Books for Africa is a non-profit charity that strives to do exactly what its name suggests. Responsible for the first public library in Gambia, the charity strives to improve the experience of students and teachers in Africa by providing children with the educational resources they deserve.

Through the Knowledge Drive initiative, students at the University of Dallas have the opportunity to help by submitting study materials to Course Hero’s website, www.coursehero.com.

Cory Boyd, a current senior English major, found out about this initiative online. “Course Hero was looking for an intern online and I was really drawn to the charity aspect of it,” said Boyd, who has been hired by the company.

Course Hero, based out of Silicon Valley in California, is an online study tool that allows students to upload their study materials for their peers to use. These materials range from class notes to study guides to past quizzes, and are completely student-generated. Every year, students throw away countless educational resources that other students could use; Course Hero gives those often discarded resources a home. According to Course Hero, over 90% of students who have begun to use Knowledge Drive have noticed an improvement in their GPA.

“People here care a lot about their education, so they create this huge wealth of student resources to help them study and, at the end of every semester, it just gets thrown away,” said Boyd. “With this website, later students get a chance to use it.”

In the Knowledge Drive initiative, Course Hero has pledged to send one book to Africa for every ten documents uploaded to its website. These books will mainly be textbooks, and they will provide an education to children who otherwise wouldn’t receive it.

The Knowledge Drive has already sent over 140,000 books to Africa, and that number continues to rise. By uploading their notes, essays, or other study materials, students at UD can grant the gift of learning to students across the globe.

“The uploading process only takes a few seconds, but it can mean a world of difference to a child in Africa,” Boyd explained.

As an extra incentive, the books are even donated in honor of the students who submit their material. Additionally, students who contribute enough documents to Course Hero’s website to send four books to Africa will also receive a premium membership, allowing them access to all study material on the site, as well as online tutors.

Boyd has challenged UD to raise at least 100 books for the charity. “I know everyone here is incredibly charitable. You don’t have to look any further than Charity Week to see that,” said Boyd.

However, Boyd stressed that all submitted documents must be the student’s own material; professor-made or copyrighted material is not allowed. “Course Hero is strongly opposed to plagiarism and reviews submitted documents thoroughly,” said Boyd.

 

How to Contribute:

1) Visit http://www.coursehero.com/oncampus_registerForm.php and create an account. Under the “Group” option, select “Dallas-Cory-Boyd.”

2) Click the orange “Upload Documents” button. Documents that are eligible to be uploaded include study guides, class notes, papers, essays, theses, lab reports and practice tests/quizzes with answers.

3) In the school drop-down box, select “University of Dallas.”

4) Select the file to upload and make sure the file name is descriptive and specific. Then, fill out the required course information.

 

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