StuDocu, a platform where users upload their college notes and study guides, raised $50 million in its latest round of funding from the venture capital firm Partech, the company announced Monday.
Its users include 15 million students from 2,000 universities internationally, according to a press release. The platform is accessible on mobile and desktop and includes a rating system. Documents are also grouped by course, and there’s a search function within each university. Customers, according to the company’s website, include Arizona State University, New York University and Cornell.
Student-created StuDocu tools grew in popularity over the pandemic, doubling monthly active users during 2020, and will use the money to continue expanding its global reach, according to the press release. The platform also expanded into high schools during the pandemic.
CEO Marnix Broer told EdScoop the company is exploring how to build community among students in addition to allowing them to share notes and study guides. That could mean adding in new features like one-on-one tutoring or group study.
Broer said students often form study groups through Facebook and WhatsApp and that studying together can benefit those who don’t understand a concept and those who might have a better grasp.
“Even though you already understood it, while explaining it you even start understanding it better,” he said. “And of course, you’re helping your friend out.”
Collaborating on understanding college coursework can set students on the right path for the workforce, Broer said.
The pandemic sparked interest in how students can collaborate and connect online, but open educational resources are also gaining popularity among universities, instead of traditional textbooks. A study by Bay View Analytics found that faculty awareness of open educational resources grew from 27% to 44%, responding that they are at least “somewhat aware” of OER.
StudySmart, another collaborative learning platform, which launched in 2018, announced a $15 million Series A funding this week, according to TechCrunch.