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About Us

Our Mission

Nested Learning Collective is a volunteer team of leading educators and technologists with the mission of making it easier for our learning communities to stay connected and engaged during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team currently works on building partnerships, surveying student, parent, and educator needs, technical design, and finding excellent learning modules for the home.

How It Began

Nested Learning Collective is an independent project created by Beth Altringer of Harvard University in March 2020.

Leadership Team:

Chair: Beth Altringer, Founder, Design Lab at Harvard University

Partnerships Lead: Justin Ferrell, Stanford University

Research Lead: Laurie Delaney, Senior UX Researcher, Design Lab at Harvard University

Industry partners:

Zachary Davis, President, Lyceum.fm (Launch Partner, Audio education)

Cleo Barnett,, Executive Director, Amplifier.org (Donation Processing Partner)

Faculty partners:

Burak Cakmak, Dean of Fashion School, Parson’s University

Molly Crockett, Yale University

Nathan Eagle, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Ian Gonsher, Brown University

Dharmishta Rood, SXSW Startup Accelerator Board Member, former Managing Director of Community, Singularity University

Sally Elley, Design Education Advisor

Join Our Efforts

This Spring, educators scrambled to adapt their classes for teaching via video. It did not go very well. By this Fall, we need to embed virtual classrooms with more of the social, emotional, and motivational elements that make in-person teaching so engaging.

Nested Learning Collective began with a simple idea: rally around our educational communities and provide relief to the millions of educators worldwide tasked with being ‘prepared for everything’ this fall: face to face, online, and hybrid teaching scenarios.

This quote summarizes the problem: “I teach three large courses and am currently teaching summer session. I can’t redo those three fall courses in three ways. Preparing for all possibilities is just overwhelming, exhausting and ultimately impossible” – Erika Lee of Indiana University

Our educational communities are struggling. Educators, like all of us, are dealing with COVID-19 at work and at home, while juggling a much heavier workload. Schools are cutting budgets and some may not survive. Even if universities remain open, many students will choose to avoid campus, and professors will have to run both a live and virtual version of their class. 

The more successful educators are at engaging students this year, the easier it will be for students and their parents to remain productive, too. There are many ways to help. Our work is powered by a coalition of private citizens, students, digital and on-campus educators and administrators, and the communities around them. If you would like to join our efforts, donate, contribute in a creative way, or improve our global reach, please email ba[at]seas.harvard.edu.

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