Connections Education, Leading Virtual Education Provider,Wins Three 2012 BESSIE Awards for Exemplary Educational Software

-- Chinese, OK State History Courses and Science Simulation Tools Honored --

BESSIE 2012 award logo

BALTIMORE (April 26, 2012) – Connections Education, a leading provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual education solutions for students and educational institutions, has been named a multiple winner of ComputED Gazette’s 18th Annual Best Education Software Awards (BESSIE Awards). The e-learning innovator won three 2012 BESSIE Awards for its exemplary, proprietary educational software and learning tools:

  • Oklahoma State History – Upper Elementary Social Studies Website
  •  Elementary Chinese – Middle School Foreign Language Website
  • Virtual Science Lab WebsiteScience Simulation Tools – High School

2012 marks the third straight year that Connections Education, which is part of the global learning company, Pearson (, has been honored by ComputEd for its innovative e-curriculum and learning tools that span elementary, middle, and high school. ComputED Gazette’s BESSIE Awards recognize innovative and content-rich programs and websites that provide parents and teachers with the technology to foster educational excellence. Winners are selected from titles submitted by publishers and learning providers from around the world.

Connections Education’s Senior Vice President of Curriculum and Instruction Pat Hoge, commented on the recent award wins. “One of the most rewarding aspects about working for Connections Education is the ability to develop online courses that deliver rigorous academic content in a way that engages students and gets them excited about a subject. It is a creative process and we have an incredible team of curriculum experts and e-learning developers that work to build and combine content that is not only interesting and dynamic, but also aligned to state and Common Core State Standards. We are honored and inspired by this achievement as we continue to enhance our online curriculum.”

Connections Education won its first 2012 BESSIE Award for Oklahoma State History, a core curricular course that offers an introduction to Oklahoma state history for the 4th grade students enrolled in Oklahoma Connections Academy. The course covers state-mandated content that focuses on the state's geography, history, economy, culture, and government. Students trace the state's history from the early history of Native Americans up through the present time. The course introduces analytical skills such as recognizing change and continuity over time and identifying cause and effect. Students use Connections’ proprietary Teachlet® tutorials and real-time virtual LiveLesson® session with teachers, Google Earth, and videos and have the opportunity to communicate, collaborate and connect with students across the state.

Elementary Chinese, winner of Connections Education’s second BESSIE Award, is an introductory-level course that introduces students to Mandarin Chinese. In Chinese I, students learn listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills through a variety of activities, including synchronous LiveLesson® sessions with a native Mandarin speaker. The units are designed to introduce students to Chinese language and culture through familiar topics such as my family, my week, and food. Culture is presented throughout the course to help students make connections between their culture and the culture of people in the Mandarin-speaking world.

Connections Education won its third 2012 BESSIE Award in the “High School” category, for its Virtual Science Lab Website/Science Simulation Tools. The Science Simulation Tools bring scientific inquiry to life with their high-definition graphics and interactive (virtual) experiments: Lab Investigator: Rocks and Minerals  (the child is a geologist, and uses 3D tools and investigative videos to explore the properties of rocks and minerals); Virtual Pan Balance (students weigh objects, compare measurements and examine conversions); Spring Scale (a simulation tool for measuring mass and force); and Lab Investigator: Chemical Reactions (an interactive periodic table and equation editor allow students to build chemical reactions and compounds, view videos of chemical reactions, and record observations).

CompuED Gazette has served as an online education resource for educators, parents and students for more than 16 years.

Enrollment for most Connections Academy schools is going on now. Parents interested in learning more about Connections Academy virtual schools—both tuition-free public schools and the tuition-based private school option should visit School districts and other organization can learn more about offering Connections Education’s engaging e-learning courses and programs by visiting

About Connections Education
Connections Education is a leading, fully-accredited provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual education solutions for students in grades K–12. Since 2001, the company’s Connections Academy division has delivered individualized learning to students through virtual public schools and a private online academy. In the 2012–13 school year, 24 Connections Academy virtual public schools will operate in 22 states and are expected to serve more than 40,000 students from across the U.S. The Connections Learning division meets the needs of schools, school districts, and other institutions looking to develop and enhance their online learning programs. Connections Learning delivers a full range of targeted digital learning solutions to the K–12 education community including online courses, a program for homebound students, a digital learning platform, and more. More than 1000 schools, school districts, state departments of education and other educational institutions, serving tens of thousands of students throughout the United States and beyond, are already utilizing Connections Learning products and services. Connections Education is committed to expanding quality education through technology and helping students achieve both academic and personal success. For more information, call 800–382–6010 or visit Connections Education is part of the global learning company Pearson (NYSE:PSO).