Jay Tokosch is the CEO and founder of NoteAffect, a platform that enables teachers and students to engage together through classroom lecture content, real-time polling, and asking questions. Tokosch has a successful track record of creating technology startups and scaling them into profitable companies. His specialty is creating startup businesses with new products that do not exist in the market and building a company’s brand into one that is well-recognized. Prior to NoteAffect, Tokosch was CEO and co-founder of Core-apps, a ten-year-old technology company that provides software for the event industry. Core-apps was recently sold to Community Brands in March 2019.
How did your education and previous professional experience shape your current work at NoteAffect?
I am an event tech entrepreneur. I had a vision for NoteAffect from watching my youngest son study his notes for his engineering class. While I was watching him try to match his notes and the class material together, I got the idea of tweaking a feature that we had in our mobile app from my other company, Core-apps. The feature allowed presenters to share their material with users at a conference. As it turned out, I had to completely revise the feature and I added all kinds of analytics, which by then turned into a full-blown new product that I called NoteAffect. NoteAffect is my seventh creation. Prior to NoteAffect, I was CEO and co-founder of Core-apps, which was also a startup that built the first mobile apps for events.
What has been the response to NoteAffect from teachers and students?
The response has been overwhelming. Our goal from the start was to provide a tool for the three stakeholders in the education ecosystem (students, teachers, and administrators) and return on investment and I’d say we achieved our goal. Students are getter better grades and have more knowledge retention of the class material. Teachers have total insight into their students’ learning outcomes (can easily identify "at-risk students"). They can also see how their material is being absorbed by each student as well as the class as a whole. Administrators now have insight from the department level down to individual students and teachers. NoteAffect is also a big help in providing reporting for the accreditation process.
What broad trends do you think will have the most impact on learning in the years ahead?
I think the trend of using tech in the classroom will continue to grow because of what it can deliver to stakeholders. I see using technology to track how students and teachers engage in class and with materials, and to deliver predictive analysis that can really help us grow our education system at all levels.
What, if any, are future plans for NoteAffect?
Well, through feedback we have gotten so far, we are planning a version two, which will encompass more analytics and some more functionalities, including a tagging feature and some extended search capabilities. We are also launching our Corp/Gov version this fall, which will include the base product we sell for education but with significant security features that will allow companies to control and track the sharing of meeting material.
Who are the most interesting people you are following on Twitter?
I don’t do much Twitter. But I do follow Rachelle Dene Poth. She likes to work with tech in the classroom and is willing to provide feedback. I also follow Educause, FETC, and ISTE since they focus on the education market.
Image: Courtesy Jay Tokosch