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Understanding the U.S. health care system on Khan Academy

One hundred years ago, a patient paid a doctor when they wanted medical help. Since then, things have gotten more complicated in the US, and understanding the nuances of the health care system can be difficult (to put it mildly!). At one time or another, patients/families with medical bills, policy makers trying to figure out how to reduce costs, and small business owners looking to purchase a health care plan for a new employee - have all had to grapple with these complexities. In fact, even those within the system – doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists – struggle at times.

This is precisely why we are excited about The Brookings Institution - Khan Academy partnership, which launched last week. The Brookings Institution has world-class experts that have a solid understanding of how the US health care system works. Dr. Darshak Sanghavi is one such expert - a fellow at The Brookings Institution with a clinical background in pediatric cardiology. Dr. Sanghavi has worked hard to build an engaging tutorial that covers key topics like Medicare/Medicaid, the uninsured population, and medical billing. In fact, a terrific introduction to the U.S. health care system can be found here.

Going forward, The Brookings Institution will continue to generate excellent tutorials, which will be made available on Khan Academy, so check back frequently. The goal is to offer a free, high-quality learning experience about health care that everyone can benefit from!

Introduction to the U.S. health care system:

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Share your bio and activity on your new profile

New user profile

From Khan Academy software developer Stephanie H. Chang (www.stchangg.com):

We recently redesigned user profiles on Khan Academy. Now you can share your bio, badge count, and activity with others.

Visit your new Khan Academy profile!

We are very sensitive about sharing learning information about our users, so we have chosen the most private defaults for these sections. You can use the privacy controls to manage who sees these sections: 

Privacy settings

Child accounts are limited so that no one other than their parent/teacher coaches can see any learning activity information.

We’ve also updated the profile pop-ups on posts and computer programs:

Profile pop-up

Here’s a peek at our internal team leaderboard. As you can see, Sal has a… significant lead:

image

Major credit goes to Tabitha Yong, Joel Burget, Ben Komalo, Marcia Lee, Ben Kamens, and many other team members who helped design, review, and try out this new feature over many iterations.

Enjoy your new profile!

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Here are the NCLEX-RN competition winners!

Running competitions is always a ton of fun here at Khan Academy. The best part is looking through each submission to see the creative ideas used to teach a particular subject - a bit like opening gifts over the winter holidays. As the final day of the competition approaches, the gifts start appearing faster and faster, each one different from the next!

The NCLEX-RN competition we recently held was no different. We received almost 100 submissions from folks all around the world, emerging from over 60 hospitals/ institutions. Submissions came from people in the disciplines of nursing, medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, public health, and graduate studies in biological science. We were stunned with the fantastic quality of the submissions, and want to congratulate everyone who participated in our competition. The videos submitted to us explained topics in such creative and engaging ways, and the questions really reflected content a graduate nurse would see on the NCLEX-RN. Fabulous work!

Today we are announcing the competition winners! We’ve picked a total of 14 winners who will be joining us at a training camp this spring where they’ll work together to hone their video making and question writing skills. These folks will be working on videos, questions, and articles covering medical conditions from the cardiovascular, respiratory, and hematology systems. That means that before long, you can come to Khan Academy to learn how asthma is diagnosed or the difference between a heart attack and heart failure. You can expect to see their hard work start appearing on the Khan Academy website sometime this summer. Check out the winners on the NCLEX-RN winners page by following this link!

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Nationwide MATHletes Challenge launches in Ireland

On January 27, Irish technology entrepreneur Sean O’Sullivan launched the 2014 MATHletes Challenge, a contest that will introduce students across Ireland to Khan Academy. They’ll compete for more than €20,000 in prizes as they learn math on our site. The competition began on February 1 and lasts just over three months. We’re thrilled to be part of this one-of-a-kind opportunity!

MATHletes Challenge 2014

As announced on Siliconrepublic.com, “MATHletes Challenge 2014, which O’Sullivan is launching today with the Minister for Training and Skills Ciaran Cannon, aims to help students develop the confidence and competence to excel in maths by introducing Irish students and teachers to the Khan Academy. … In the MATHletes challenge, students will compete in county and provincial finals, with top scorers advancing to the national finals, which are scheduled to take place in early May. Students will also be able to connect with other contestants by attending free Saturday Khan Clubs which will be held in the National Educations Centres across the country.”

For more information, visit the MATHletes Challenge launch site. Also check out this video to see how Irish teachers and students are using Khan Academy.

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Khan Academy joins Bridge to find more amazing designers

Khan Academy Design Team

From Jason Rosoff, Lead Designer (third from the left):

Most folks I speak to know something about Khan Academy’s mission to provide a free world-class education to anyone anywhere, but many ask me what a designer does at Khan Academy.

What I usually tell them is that the design team at Khan Academy is a crack team of problem solvers who imagine and create real solutions to real student problems. Sometimes that means helping craft a new interactive way learn a math concept, or creating a platform for cool multi-step computer science challenge, or giving students a more meaningful understanding of their progress toward learning an important concept in mathematics. What it always means is solving real, meaningful, and impactful problems for millions of students around the globe.

Over the last few years, Khan Academy has built a great team of designers and engineers that together have built an amazing platform for learners and a showcase for content creators. We’re really excited to be working with Bridge and the Designer Fund to infuse fresh perspective and talent into our team.

If helping millions around the globe to learn more, more quickly, and more joyfully sounds like the kind of challenge that interests you, Bridge provides additional reasons to apply now. On top of our already awesome benefits package, Bridge gives you access to talks and workshops from top designers and access to a fantastic community of designers at top companies throughout the Bay Area.

If you’re interested, check out http://designerfund.com/bridge. Applications close on March 2nd. Apply directly here, http://app.designerfund.com/bridge/, and feel free to contact bridge@designerfund.com with any questions.

You can also learn more about our design team at http://designerfund.com/bridge/company/khan-academy/.

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