Education in the age of internet could be in for an exciting time ahead. The Global Learning XPRIZE on Monday shortlisted five out of 198 teams for a shot at the $10 million prize. The XPRIZE Foundation is non-profit organization that has launched several global competitions to find solutions for many of humanity’s problems like clean drinking water, housing, access to health facilities and environment protection.

The Global Learning XPRIZE is an ambitious project that challenged teams around the world to develop an open source and scalable software that can enable children in developing countries to teach themselves basic reading, writing and arithmetic within 15 months.

According to UNESCO, there are an estimated 250 million children across the world who cannot read and write or perform basic arithmetic calculations, and that an additional 1.6 million teachers were needed in classrooms by 2015.

The Global Learning prize was launched in collaboration with UNESCO and World Food Programme and aims to develop a software that will radically empower children and communities with limited access to schooling to learn themselves. The funding for the Global Learning XPRIZE has been provided by Elon Musk, who is rather synonymous with initiating seemingly impossible projects. He already has remarkable achievements like SpaceX, Hyperloop, Open AI and Tesla under his belt.

Musk contributed $15 million for the prize. Of this, each of the final five teams have received $1 million, while the remaining $10 million will go to the eventual winner.

Beginning November 2017, the five solutions will be put to a vigorous field test over a span of 15 months in the Tanga and Arusha regions of Tanzania. Google has already donated 8,000 tablets for the field testing. The testing will conclude in February 2019, and the team with the software solution that exhibits most gains in reading, writing and arithmetic learning will be crowned the winner. All five software will be open sourced to the global community.

The teams to make the final five are:

Team CCI, New York, United States

Team Chimple, Bangalore, India

Kitkit School, Berkeley, United States

Team onebillion, UK/Malawi/Tanzania

Team RoboTutor, Pittsburgh, United States

Stay tuned to The Academia Magazine for more updates on XPRIZE.

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