- Sign up here and tell us about your course. Select the Inspark Smart Course (low-cost textbook replacement) you would like to use (see below for a list). You can try any of the offerings as a student (self-enroll), or request instructor access to a demo.
- We will contact you with instructions on how to get your Class, most of which can be found using our Instructors Guide.
- If you are using an LMS, you can get started now ensuring Smart Sparrow has been added.
What is a Smart Course?
A Smart Course is a series of digital learning experiences, or lessons, mostly used as a textbook replacement, designed by our Inspark team and partners, such as Arizona State University, promoting active learning. Our mission is to enable a virtuous cycle of curiosity, exploration, and discovery, preparing students for the 21st century. Instructors are provided with tools to track student outcomes and customize the content using the Smart Sparrow platform. Instructor and student support is provided by the Inspark Teaching Network.
What is available?
Introductory Biology. BioBeyond is introductory biology courseware centered on the authentic, compelling question of how to find life in the universe. BioBeyond is a full textbook replacement or can be used alongside OpenStax Biology (OER), and has been created for a 1-semester, 4-credit introductory level biology course, geared toward general education for the non-science major. $40 per student.
Anatomy & Physiology. The A&P Primer consists of seven (7) interactive and adaptive lessons to provide students with the foundational concepts to be successful in an Anatomy & Physiology I course. This 4-5 hours of learner time can be used before the first day of class or during the first few days or weeks. $25 per student.
Introductory Chemistry. CriticalChem provides an adaptive journey into the study of conceptual chemistry, covering concepts for the typical 1-semester, 3-credit lecture course. The courseware consists of a preparatory unit geared toward breaking down the mathematical skills required to be successful, five (5) contextually driven units featuring many interactive simulations, as well as problem sets and guided readings paired with OpenStax (OER) Chemistry ebook. $40 per student.
Astrobiology. HabWorlds is courseware to support a 1-semester 4-credit astrobiology course, typically taken as a general education science course option for non-science majors. Students learn by doing as they create and destroy stars, hunt for planets, and search for signs of life. The course features a personalized quest, “Habitable Hunt”, where students search a field of stars for evidence of inhabited worlds. $40 per student.
Astronomy I & II. Adapting and expanding on the HabWorlds courseware, this Astronomy courseware covers 2-semesters of 4-credit Astronomy courses. $40 per student for Astronomy I / $40 per student for Astronomy II.
Introductory Geology. Living On The Edge is a 3-credit general education course, built around the driving question “Is there a safe place to live on Earth?”. It has a strong focus on critical thinking and data-driven discovery of recent disasters. $70 per student.
Science for Citizens. Complementary courseware, 8 units in total, using a series of case studies to engage students in the practice of evaluating claims using scientific concepts and processes. The interactive and multidisciplinary approach of this course is particularly appealing to non-science majors. Content and concepts derive from the natural sciences, psychology and paradigms of critical thought. Case studies and claims are tied to medicine, environmental policy, UFOs, extra-sensory perception (ESP) and mysterious creatures like the Loch Ness Monster. $35 per student.
Science Writing. Complementary courseware, designed for General Chemistry Lab, that addresses the need for many students to improve their writing fundamental skill level, while also helping them develop the new writing skills that are expected of successful scientists. Consists of six (6) adaptive and interactive lessons (3 hours of learner time) targeting research & citation, data analysis and writing in science through modeling, shared writing, independent practice and reflection. Humor is used to create stickiness and diffuse serious nature of the content. $25 full suite per student / $5 per lesson per student.
ChemLabs (Online Interactive Chemistry Labs), by Oregon State University. This is a suit of labs that can be customized, or used as is, to meet the needs of your institution. The offering is $6 per lab per student, with a discount for more than three labs. The cost to students is caped $50 for all the labs. Labs available:
- Lab Techniques
- Error and Standard Deviation
- Linear Regression & Spreadsheets
- Combustion Analysis
- Synthesis & TLC
- Metal + HCl
- TLC and Elution
- Freezing Point Depression
- Osmotic Pressure
- Iodine Clock
- Titration I
- Titration II
- Weak Acid Equilibrium
- Nuclear Chemistry
- Organic Group
- Calorimetry of Food
- Vitamin C
- GC-MS (Drug analysis)
- DNA Hydrolysis
In this five-part experience, students will:
- observe variation between species of tortoises, birds, and lizards across the Galapagos Islands
- define and explore selective pressures including natural, artificial, and sexual selection
- define and explore mechanisms of speciation, including allopatry and sympatry
- develop scientific hypotheses and gather data to support or refute them
- frequently use a 100-generation speciation simulator to examine the long-term effects of selective pressures and preferences
This is an opportunity to trial new digital learning experiences and provide feedback. Access the lessons, teacher support materials, and technical support.
〉 Humanities / Social Sciences
Global Challenges. Designed to provide an active learning experience and peer-to-peer interaction, Global Challenge is digital humanities courseware containing a real world narrative of an online National Geographic magazine, which acts as the centerpiece, helping students focus on in-depth research into the lives of others as well as seeing a variety of perspectives put forth by peers. Full textbook-replacement, geared toward a 3- or 4-credit course, there is a project-based approach to learning, emphasizing critical thinking skills. $50 per student.