A team of change makers

Or perhaps trouble makers?

We built LoopMe because we have a vision for a better society. A society where more people act developmentally and reflect upon it more, and where their deep resulting insights are made more visible to their leaders. Most people want change, but fewer want to change, so we sometimes end up in trouble.

THE LOOPME TEAM


Carin Sävetun, CEO

Carin works primarily with development and support of the LoopMe system. She is also project leader / research assistant for various impact studies. She designs and manage different tailor-made customer solutions for the LoopMe system in terms of quality objectives, adjustments and user training.

Co-author of four studies on the effects of entrepreneurial learning. Co-founder of the non-profit association FramtidsFrön i Väst where she worked together with 15 different municipalities in Western Sweden to encourage the work with entrepreneurship in school. Has previously been regional manager of the organisation Junior Achievement in the region of Gothenburg.

Martin Lackéus, Co-founder

Martin is a PhD in Entrepreneurial Education at Chalmers University of Technology and part of the Faculty of Chalmers School of Entrepreneurship. Researching, among other things, what effects entrepreneurial learning with a focus on value creation have on student motivation and student achievement

Also researching the assessment of experience-based learning. Has worked with 20 different municipalities, schools and colleges to support them in the work of value-creating learning through practical action research. Also has long experience in IT development.

Christer Westlund, Co-founder

Today, Christer is working primarily to support school administrations to organize the activities, focusing on the development of educational development efforts.

Co-founder of the Foundation “Drivhuset” and also of the concept “Ung Berättare” where 15,000 students wrote and published their own book.Christer is also co-author to the book “Så tänds eldsjälar”, which is the most widely distributed book in Sweden in entrepreneurial learning.

Patrik Bäckström, CTO

Patrik has been with us since 2015 and has been involved from the beginning in the work of building up the entire technical structure around the LoopMe system, from frontend via mobile apps to backend server with database. Today, Patrik works primarily with the development of new functionality, support cases, further development behind the scenes, and the graphical user interface.

Patrik has previous experience as CEO of We Know IT AB, where they worked with digitalisation for many customers in different industries.

OUR UNIQUE STORY


2012: A lazy researcher took to digital means

The LoopMe journey started already back in 2012 at Chalmers University of Technology. A lazy researcher Martin wanted to collect data remotely from his students for a research study, and designed a mobile survey for the 14 participants. The resulting survey was launched later that year, and had two very simple questions – “How do you feel?” and “Why do you feel like this?” See figure below, taken from a book chapter about LoopMe that you can read here. The survey was completed 556 times by the 13 participants over a period of 18 months. The data collected was later used for a research article published in International Journal of Management Education, see here.

What was interesting about the data was that the two very simple questions allowed for the researcher to see right into “the head” of the students. The student reflections were so emotionally charged and deeply probing, and the researcher was offered so much insight. It was clear already at this stage, that a significant discovery hade been made through focusing on students’ most emotional learning events.

2014: The first “real” versions of LoopMe

In late 2013, a discussion took place between the researcher Martin and a school consultant Christer. Martin showed the ingriguing data coming from the emotional events survey to Christer, and the response was – “We have to build this properly, this can really help a lot of teachers!”. After some time, Martin was convinced, and they founded a spin-out venture in order to hire programmers who could build a proper mobile app, see figure above again for an example screenshot. The most immediate aim of building LoopMe was to use it in a study commissioned by Swedish National Agency of Education (SNAE) on entrepreneurial primary schools. The second version of LoopMe was completed in early September 2014, and was subsequently launched on 250 participants in two different studies of entrepreneurial education. They later were published in much respected scientific journals, see here and here.

2015: Professionalization of the company

The year after, a new version was built from the ground up, with a professionally designed graphical user interface. This was also the year our CEO joined us, Carin. She had been involved in many of the earliest studies conducted already in 2013 in primary schools, with a simple web survey. In 2015, she joined us more long-term, and has since been our CEO. A small spin-out was becoming increasingly professional. The team of programmers at this point consisted of five people, so this was a development heavy time.

2016: LoopMe gets mandatory tasks and content packages

The first three versions of LoopMe were all based on the idea that users would determine whenever they wanted to report something to their leaders, just like in most established social media platforms. This worked well in research projects where teachers could keep reminding the participants to produce data when something relevant happened. But it was difficult to get more than around 15‒30 percent of a group to participate. The founding team therefore decided to adjust the focus of LoopMe, making mandatory tasks a standard functionality for all users. While most users had not asked specifically for this, it was hypothesized to be a way to increase perceived relevance and engagement among a wider base of potential users.

This change clarified usage of LoopMe and allowed for more sustainable usage patterns among participants in a group. The resulting difficulty instead became how leaders were to think around the design of mandatory tasks. This triggered the development of ‘content packages’, constituting ready-made sets of 3‒20 tasks and associated tags that any leader could pick up and distribute to a group of users. The fourth version of LoopMe was completed in August 2016.

A change that resulted in an even more powerful research tool

The introduction of mandatory tasks in LoopMe opened for a more powerful way to collect and analyze research data. The tasks allowed for a more fine-grained design of participant behavior. The logical link between tasks, emotional ratings and user-generated text allowed for quantifying cause-effect relations between independent variables (i.e., behavioral tasks) and dependent variables (i.e., emotions, tags and written reflections). Since many of the research oriented functions were kept in version 4 of LoopMe, the research team found itself with even more powerful means at hand for data collection and analysis than before.

THREE PARALLELL CHANGE AGENDAS IN SOCIETY


Coming up to present day, we see that the unique LoopMe journey has put us on track to changing education as we know it, in many and in powerful ways. We are currently leading three important change agendas in society. And it is the power of LoopMe that has allowed us to make a difference in so many different areas at the same time. The three key areas are:

Reinventing action-based education

Teachers have used LoopMe to design action-based learning experiences by breaking the social learning process down into manageable tasks. This has made it possible to get significant quality increases in many different educational arenas.

Entrepreneurial education has been changed significantly through the introduction of value creation pedagogy, which was identified through LoopMe based research. The quality of apprenticeship education has been significantly improved through digitizing the collaboration between vocational teachers, their students and their supervisors at different workplaces.

A sharp increase in Swedish content packages related to action-based education Illustrates the rapid spread of LoopMe among teachers in many action-based areas.

Reinventing school improvement

It has been known for some time that action research is a suitable research methodology for school improvement. What has been lacking is a tool that facilitates such work in practice.

LoopMe has been shown capable of providing simplified and more efficient daily interaction between key actors in school improvement work. When such work is done digitally, it also generates both big and thick data that can later be harvested for the so important analysis afterwards in school improvement work. LoopMe has shown capable of both facilitating the spread of hypothesized interventions across many teachers, and the subsequent analysis of outcomes. This has not been possible before.

A sharp increase in Swedish content packages related to school improvement Illustrates the rapid spread of LoopMe among school developers in many areas.

Reinventing educational research

A third area that LoopMe has shown capable of revolutionizing is educational research. Due to a conservative research community, this area lagging behind the two other areas. But the potential is equally strong here too.

A few researchers have seen the opportunity, and are now conducting research studies in areas as varied as language development in pre-schools, programming education in primary schools, corporate entrepreneurship training at university level and digital language education in lower secondary schools. Judging from the many tangible benefits observed in the two other areas, there is reason to believe that educational research will also be revolutionized through LoopMe.

But we have yet to see an increase in content packages related to educational research.

LoopMe today: A social enterprise journey

The many interesting opportunities to improve society illustrate a key driver behind the LoopMe team. We want to contribute to a better society, and we do it primarily through changing education. We measure our success not in terms of economic growth or profits, but in terms of improvements in society. That makes the company behind LoopMe, Me Analytics AB, to be a classical social venture. Our goal is to build a better society, and our means is a firm that develops a unique IT tool that we call LoopMe. You are welcome to join us on our journey. Contact us and let us know how you want to help us help society!

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