frequently asked questions
about next knowledge
When and why was Next Knowledge founded?
Next Knowledge was conceived by Stephen Straker and Lawrence Feld in 2018. Driven by a desire to help improve how learners learn and after two years of effort, Alice and the Wordspace were created in 2020 and Next Knowledge officially launched to the public in 2021 and had their first school implementation in the Fall of 2021.
What is Next Knowledge?
We are a learning company dedicated to enabling deep learning and comprehension that remains out of reach for too many individuals. Our mission is to provide lasting social value by delivering a proven method to help people comprehend, retain and reuse information... forever.
How will Next Knowledge improve lives?
The central issue that Next Knowledge addresses is under-developed reading and writing performance that results in decreased confidence and ambition, as well as greater challenges in life generally. By helping learners learn with a lasting method they can use throughout their lives, we help to level the playing field. Learners of all abilities can have a better shot at a happy, successful life.
What is LEARN?
LEARN is our proven and proprietary method (patent pending) to enhance learning. LEARN is a series of steps any learner can take to truly comprehend, retain and ultimately reuse the material in front of them. Our method provides the foundation needed for individuals to keep learning successfully in all stages of life.
How do you know LEARN works?
Our proprietary learning method was developed by our co-founder, Lawrence Feld, over 30 years ago. Lawrence developed the method, LEARN, after exhausting his entire toolkit while helping a child that was struggling to pass in school in spite of an extremely high IQ. Since developing the method, LEARN has been demonstrated to work effectively on thousands of learners from a broad range of ages and abilities.
What/who is Alice?
Next Knowledge’s Artificial Learning Intelligence & Comprehension Engine, Alice, is the digital delivery agent of the LEARN method. Alice is embedded in the Next Knowledge Wordspace and is a companion on a learner’s journey, always available and ready to give them a starting place in the materials at hand.
What are the benefits of using Alice?
Alice initiates active learning, which promotes better results for all learners. Much of the learning done today is passive: a learner is bombarded with subject matter, provided with the answers required to complete a task and expected to retain them. The responsibility in a system like this is on the learner alone. In an active learning environment, learning becomes less a one-sided conversation and more interactive - the learner engages with the process and thereby absorbs and retains a much higher percentage of the material. LEARN -- and Alice’s delivery of it -- is based on this approach. An active learner is an engaged learner, and an engaged learner is far more likely to retain and reuse the material they read.
How can LEARN/Alice help me?
Alice lets learners take control of their own learning, while providing unique guidance and assistance. While the methodology behind our approach was originally created for kids with diagnosed learning disabilities, Alice is designed to help any learner. The key behind it is the companion nature of Alice: she stays with you while you are learning, making suggestions and helping you create study materials that will be beneficial to your long-term retention
Why should I use LEARN/Alice?
You should use our LEARN method and Alice if you’re looking to improve how you engage with text. Our method helps develop new learning habits that will increase confidence and promote success. At Next Knowledge, we recognize the difference between teaching how to memorize and teaching how to comprehend, and Alice helps learners understand information, not simply repeat it.
Who can benefit from using Alice and the Wordspace?
Everyone can benefit! Learners of all abilities and in any stage of life can advance their learning by using Alice, the Wordspace and our proven methods. It is a one-size-fits-all solution that encourages improved reading comprehension. Ironically, those that will benefit most are at opposite ends of the spectrum: those that might be characterized as either chronic underperformers or masterful high performers in terms of effective reading and writing.
How does it work?
To use the Wordspace and interact with Alice, first you need to sign up for your free trial. Once your account is set up, you will input your material (informative or literary text) into the Wordspace. Next, Alice will process the text by breaking it up into its individual words, terms or phrases, and then suggest the word that represents the main topic. She gets you started and helps you along the way!
What is the cost associated with the Wordspace?
We have plans for individuals on a monthly or annual basis. Our plans cost less than a dollar per day! To learn more about individual plans click here. If you're interested in plans for multiple users -- learning pod plans or classroom plans -- please contact us.
Can I share my membership/subscription with others?
Sorry! The individual plan is designed for a single user.
What's your "buy one, give one" all about?
Not everyone can afford helpful tools like Alice and the Next Knowledge Wordspace, but we don't want that to stop individuals from benefiting from the opportunities unlocked through our methods. We built this into our business model: for every paid member, we give a membership to someone in need. We typically deliver these memberships through schools in under-privileged communities and through requests we receive from educators and community groups.