Social learning startup Grockit has raised an additional $7 million in venture funding to expand its online test-preparation services.
Although not related to the funding, Grockit also recently launched a new service called Grockit Answers that can turn any YouTube video into a Q&A session. (Here's a company-supplied example on the credit crisis.)
Grockit's tools draw on social networking and online gaming to personalize learning outside of the classroom--ideally, to help students conquer their academic weaknesses and ace test preparation. The company's tag line is "Test Prep Made Fun." Grockit claims one million registered users and 25,000 to 50,000 monthly actives.
The San Francisco based company has now raised a total of $24 million, although its latest round--a series D--is at the same dollar value as its previous funding round, according to CrunchBase. The series D was led by Atlas Venture. Benchmark Capital and Integral Capital are return investors, while NewSchools Venture Fund and GSV Capital also participated.
Grockit says its social learning platform is based on rigorous academic research--specifically, formalized educational protocols such as adaptive learning algorithms that can help students improve their performance on standardized tests and entrance exams such as the SAT, ACT, GRE, and the LSAT and the GMAT. The company's latest product, the IIM-CAT, helps students prepare for applying to India's top management school.
Grockit charges students a monthly fee--typically $19.99--for access to its practice test questions, study plans, reviews and so forth. The company claims that students using its tools solve twice as many problems and are 10 percent more likely to get answers right than students who study alone. To date, students using Grockit have supposedly answered more than 10 million questions and sent 100 million message through the service.
Last month at f8, Grockit announced a Facebook initiative. Students using Grockit can now invite Facebook friends to create online study rooms on Facebook. Via Facebook profiles, students can share their study progress, show questions attempted and the number of hours they've spent studying.