We spoke to Hamzah, CEO at Study Hat, to find out how he transformed exam preparation for students and scaled his business
Study Hat is a popular and fast-growing education company based in the UK, helping students across the world prepare for their exams. Study Hat specialises in the 11+ exam, SATS, GRE, and PSLE and is passionate about providing engaging online learning that works. Their students can access a variety of online resources including: video tutorials, question banks, mock exams, and progress reports.
Study Hat's previous online learning platform, Thinkific LMS, was limited in functionality and features, restricted to just simple videos and basic quizzes. Hamzah shared that the learning wasn’t user-friendly for students, describing the platform as “unresponsive on phones and tablets” and having “quite a few bugs”.
"With Synap, there were a bunch of different features that we could really utilize for our students. Timed quizzes were one of the main features for us and the layout looked really good as well."
- Hamzah, CEO at Study Hat
As a result, Study Hat quickly outgrew their existing system and Hamzah began searching for a new platform. A key motivation to move to Synap was to provide students with more engaging features, that “ticked all the boxes and was more of a level up from where we were”, therefore enabling the company to evolve.
Flexible exam preparation
Hamzah recognised that not every student learns in the same way. He wanted to give Study Hat’s learners the freedom to learn in the most effective way for them. With Synap’s quiz configuration settings, learners can choose whether they want to take the quiz in “practice mode”, where answers and feedback are given after each question, or in “exam mode”, where the results are only shown after all questions are answered.
“Having that option to be able to choose between practice and exam mode is really good, some students prefer having the answers revealed and some don't. It's giving students the flexibility to learn in their own way.”
Students can also use post-quiz insights from Synap’s dashboard to prepare for their exams. Quizzes can be automatically timed, enabling learners to see how long it takes them to finish. Students can use this information to strengthen their time management skills, ensuring they complete their real exams in the allocated time.
A quick and easy transition from their old LMS
Transitioning from one platform to another and transferring all existing content is often a daunting task. However, Hamzah found the Synap onboarding process to be an easy process. “The interface is quite simple. I’m not technical but I was able to figure my way through the platform”. Study Hat was up and running on Synap in only a few weeks after transferring all of their material from Thinkific LMS. Approximately 5,000 questions were uploaded in bulk using a spreadsheet template, with Synap's question importer handling all of the heavy-lifting.
“The interface is quite simple. I’m not technical but I was able to figure my way through the platform."
Engaging students with personalised learning
Whilst researching numerous learning platforms, one feature that made Synap stand out for Study Hat was the Spaced Learning algorithms. Synap’s unique algorithms automatically generate new quizzes for learners, based on their individual strengths and weaknesses in past quizzes.
Although Study Hat has 5,000 questions for students to practice, it’s difficult for tutors to manually tailor the learning for each student, “it’s impossible for us to say to a student - ‘hey, this is what you’re weaker or stronger on”. Synap automates this personalisation for students, “it identifies what they're good at, and what they need to work on”, meaning that the content remains fresh without Study Hat having to create and upload new questions.
“With the Spaced Learning feature, there is a daily quiz involved. So they're able to come back to it and complete a new quiz every single day. And it gets students using it on a daily basis as opposed to a weekly basis.”
Student feedback on the Spaced Learning algorithms has been “really good”, Hamzah has found that students are engaging with the Study Hat platform on a daily basis to prepare for their exams. Students “really brush up on their skills and make a lot of progress very quickly”, by taking daily randomised quizzes, as it makes memorising answers difficult.
Study Hat's students have remained engaged with the content thanks to a combination of tailored learning and dynamic practice quizzes, resulting in positive feedback from both students and parents, and a high level of customer retention.
Automating administration with Zapier
Having to manually organise your users can be time consuming, especially when running a 24/7 online growing business. That’s what Study Hat was initially doing prior to joining Synap 12 months ago.
Hamzah expressed to the Synap team that he wanted an easier way to complete his administrative tasks, particularly with automating the checkout process for his online resources. Using Synap’s Zapier Integration, Study Hat were able to implement a workflow that worked for them, creating a seamless user experience from checkout to platform.
With the rise of ‘on demand learning’, especially during Covid, students want instant access to their learning. With Synap’s Zapier integration, the Study Hat portal is linked to WooCommerce. Now all a user needs to do is purchase the product they want from Study Hat's WooCommerce, and the Zapier workflow does the rest of the work to give the user the right access to the product.
“As soon as they purchase, literally, within seconds, they'll get that email with an invite to the platform and they can make their own account from there.”
Despite Hamzah describing himself as “non-technical”, he found setting up the Zapier workflow “quite simple and straightforward to do.” Since setting up his first “Zap” over a year ago, Study Hat have expanded their use of Zapier on Synap to help them grow their business.
As Study Hat have multiple products for global customers, a “Zap” was set up so that UK purchases are linked specifically with the UK user group within their portal, meaning the customer receives instant access to the correct course.
This is how Study Hat’s zap works:
- User purchases product via WooCommerce
- A zap sends information to Synap about the user and product
- User receives an instant email invite to set up their account
- User creates login and their new product is available to start learning from
Synap has become a key tool for Study Hat thanks to its combination of engaging, personalised learning and automated processes. In order for Study Hat to continue growing, it intends to form a long-term partnership with Synap.