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Three companies partner in LINE’s learning consulting business powered by contact center technologies and an elite university student database

PoC achieved success in 2 areas including METI’s Future Classroom model school project
Help municipalities and educational bodies adopt the service to spread SNS learning & school life consulting

May 14, 2020

Tomonokai Co., Ltd.
transcosmos inc.
transcosmos online communications inc.

Tomonokai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan; President: Shigeki Tokuoka), transcosmos inc. (Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan; President and COO: Masataka Okuda) and transcosmos online communications inc. (Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan; President: Hiroshi Kaizuka) have formed a partnership in the learning consulting business powered by social networking service (SNS) and contact center technologies. Prior to the service release, the companies conducted proof-of-concept (PoC) projects in two different businesses and received high praise for the successful outcomes. Now, the three companies will assist municipalities and educational institutions in adopting the service with the aim of spreading SNS-based learning consulting services.

Image of Tomonokai

■Business Objective

Amid the shortage of educational professionals owing to a shift to individual learning (background reasons include the introduction of so-called Admissions Office (AO) entrance examination where a university’s admissions office decides who is admitted based on a screening process that reviews student application, interview and essay, and the popularity of inquiry-based learning), and the increase in educational inequalities caused by geographic areas and economic power, the educational environment stands at a crossroad. Recognizing this, the three companies have launched the learning consulting business powered by LINE to provide a new learning infrastructure that addresses such a change in the environment. By leveraging contact center technologies that transcosmos and transcosmos online communications own coupled with Japan’s largest database of elite university students owned by Tomonokai, the companies aim to build an educational environment that can address the diverse range of concerns each student faces in their learning process, one that continues to shift to a more personalized approach than ever.

Leveraging its knowledge of private tutoring and after-school learning support accumulated through running the businesses for junior and senior high school students across 33 schools in the Tokyo metropolitan area, as well as its elite university student database with as many as 310,000 student data, Tomonokai will design learning consulting programs with its Learning Mentor ®, manage students, and upgrade services by analyzing students’ historical data.

(*) Learning Mentor ® is a collective term for university students, primarily at elite universities located in the Tokyo metropolitan area, who manages after-school learning programs that Tomonokai offers to junior and senior high schools.

transcosmos will assist clients in preparing their contact center framework by leveraging its abundant record of launching SNS consulting business via LINE such as bullying consultation and suicide prevention consultation, and operational know-how in contact centers business. More specifically, the company helps clients set up and operate contact centers as well as opening their LINE Official Account

transcosmos online communications will provide “KANAMETO,” its LINE-based customer support tool, offer advice on how best to utilize the LINE Official Account and assists clients in specific planning and settings of KANAMETO features such as rich menu and auto reply messages.

■Learning consulting service framework: LINE Official Account / KANAMETO & Learning Mentor® (for illustration purposes only)

Image of learning consultation system

■PoC ① Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry “Future Classroom - Learning Innovation” Model school project (Sakaki senior high school, public school in Nagano Prefecture)

In the “Verification Project at Model School for METI Future Classroom – Learning Innovation,” a project in which Tomonokai participates, the companies used KANAMETO as a tool that helps each student deepen introspection, including self-reflection after completing project-based learning and making a coursework their own. Students tend to learn only the skills to create materials and make presentations through project-based learning, not being able to deepen their learning to the extent sufficient to make it their own. The PoC found that the learning consulting is effective in leading students away from just “enjoying the team-based studying” to inspiring their willingness to learn a subject, and ultimately to developing their career awareness that are connected to their future paths.

About 15 high school freshmen at Sakaki senior high school, a public school in Nagano prefecture
From December 26, 2019 to January 22, 2020
Four Tomonokai online Learning Mentor® (10 mentors took part per session in the overall project)
LINE Official Account “Tomonokai Learning consulting@Nagano Prefecture Sakaki Senior High School,” KANAMETO, and students’ personal smartphones
One-on-one consulting during STEAM project learning, consultation related to coursework, and consultation related to paths after graduation

Online learning support
Online learning support

Tomonokai Learning Mentor Team@Future Classroom Project
Tomonokai Learning Mentor Team
@Future Classroom Project

LINE Official Account
LINE Official Account

■PoC ② Pre-University Education Program (by UNIVAS and KEI Advanced, Inc.)

LINE’s learning consulting service is used as a learning support service in a “Verification project for the Pre-University Education Program,” a project KEI Advanced, Inc. work on with their academic partner UNIVAS (Japan Association for University Athletics and Sport). UNIVAS and KEI Advanced, Inc. run an education program prior to starting university via e-learning to 3rd year students at senior high schools who have been admitted to universities on sports and other referrals. The program uses LINE as a communications channel with the students to encourage them to submit assignments and continue self-learning.

3rd graders in senior high schools that participate in the UNIVAS & KEI Advance Inc.’s verification program for the pre-university education program (7 universities, several hundred students)
January 6 to March 31, 2020 (plan)
About 20 Tomonokai online Learning Mentor® (senior university students who engage in their respective university sports clubs work as role models)
LINE Official Accountofficial account “UNIVAS pre-university education and learning support,” KANAMETO, and students’ personal smartphones
Encourage the use of KEI Advance e-learning, learning consulting on three major subjects, and career consulting

The program enjoys a high reputation among students who are still busy with their school club activities for providing an environment where they can ask for advice any time from any place such as on their way to school and during breaks.

■Future plan

Whilst a more tailored approach is required to support the personalized learning which has begun to take root, the government is taking severer approach to deliver teachers’ workstyle reform, applying penalties from April 2020. As a result, an increasing number of schools and other educational institutions are now seeking advice on how they can navigate such a difficult situation. With the aim of making the learning consulting service as a way to mitigate the tradeoff between the two conflicting demands, the three companies will spread the service across Japan. Furthermore, by accumulating logs of learning-related consulting requests, the companies will improve the level of service accuracy and offer more relevant advice on each individual student based on their lifestyles that are becoming increasingly over-scheduled and diversified.
At the same time, the companies are exploring a possibility to offer learning and school life consulting services designed for foreign students in Japan with the aim of solving educational inequality due to cultural differences by utilizing another database Tomonokai owns that stores international students data.

Learning consulting via KANAMETO/LINE official account
Learning consulting via KANAMETO/LINE official account

Asking for advice on specific subject by posting photo (e.g. math)
Asking for advice on specific subject by posting photo (e.g. math)

About Tomonokai Co., Ltd.

Originated from the University of Tokyo Tutoring Club, Tomonokai was founded in 2000. Since then, the company has been engaged in offering support to the education industry in which its 310,000 registered university students play a pivotal role. Today, Tomonokai provides 33 schools, primarily in the Tokyo metropolitan area, with recently released after-school learning support services in addition to private tutoring and after-school tutoring services. Every year, as many as 10,000 students, mainly on graduation field trips, participate in Tomonokai proprietary career educational program. Partnering with university students who play a vital role in running such educational activities, Tomonokai develops and operates learning support programs tailored to diverse students and schools. (Learning Mentor® is a registered trademark of Tomonokai Co., Ltd.)
https://www.tomonokai-corp.com/ (Corporate website)
https://toyokeizai.net/articles/-/311581 (Study on active learning)
https://prtimes.jp/main/html/rd/p/000000004.000005633.html (Support measures for Covid-19 school closures)
*All above websites are in Japanese only.

About transcosmos inc.

transcosmos launched its operations in 1966. Since then, we have combined superior “people” with up-to-date “technology” to enhance the competitive strength of our clients by providing them with superior and valuable services. transcosmos currently offers services that support clients’ business processes focusing on both sales expansion and cost optimization through our 169 bases across 30 countries/regions with a focus on Asia, while continuously pursuing Operational Excellence. Furthermore, following the expansion of e-commerce market on the global scale, transcosmos provides a comprehensive One-Stop Global E-Commerce services to deliver our clients’ excellent products and services in 48 countries/regions around the globe. transcosmos aims to be the “Global Digital Transformation Partner” of our clients, supporting the clients’ transformation by leveraging digital technology, responding to the ever-changing business environment. https://www.trans-cosmos.co.jp/english/

About transcosmos online communications inc.

transcosmos online communications inc. was founded in May 2016 as a joint-stock company between transcosmos inc. and LINE Corporation. In October 2017, the company received investment from Salesforce Ventures, an investment arm of salesforce.com, Inc. transcosmos online communications aims to deliver diverse solutions and services that build a better and stronger relationship between businesses and users through leveraging LINE’s platform user base and transcosmos’s sales and development capabilities. The company’s ultimate vision is to make their communication platform a new de facto standard for communication between businesses and users. In September, 2017, transcosmos online communications released “KANAMETO,” its unique LINE@ compatible segmented messaging tool. Visit us here (Japanese only): https://transcosmos-online.com/

Media Contact

Yoshida, Learning Design Business Department, Tomonokai Co., Ltd.
Tel: +81-3-6756-8622
Email: coach@tomonokai.net

Public Relations & Advertising Department, transcosmos inc.
Email: pressroom@trans-cosmos.co.jp

Public Relations Department, transcosmos online communications inc.
Tel: +81-3-3486-0350
Email: pr@transcosmos-online.com

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