Higher-Ed Hacks of the Week: Silk, Wikiwand, Omnity

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PRAXIS MAKES PERFECT: We’ve got tools, resources and classroom hacks right here, every week. Check them out in our Next newsletter. Do you have a tool that’s transforming the way you do research or guide a classroom? Let us know by filling out this form and we’ll go and take a look. It might just get featured!

Silk—a web-based data visualization platform. Users upload data in a ‘silk’ which organizes and visualizes the data for them to explore. They can publish and share visualizations (view galleries here.) Silk offers a free version or a premium subscription for $500/month.

Wikiwand—a free browser extension that upgrades the look and feel of Wikipedia. We know wikis aren’t peer-reviewed, but they can be a stellar starting place on the search for sources. The upgraded interface includes a sidebar menu and personalizable text (fonts, colors, sizes).

Omnity—a smart, visual search-engine that discovers connections. It allows searchers to efficiently find related documents, even if those documents do not directly cite or link to one another. A student could put a semester’s worth of essays into Omnity and it would graph, map and visualize common themes among words. Its free academic version connects course content from a range of institutions around the world. 

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