Institute of Education



The UK’s leading research accelerator programme for education technology (EdTech).

EDUCATE project workshop

EDUCATE was created to redress the lack of research evidence in the EdTech sector. It was initially launched as a three-year programme based at the UCL Institute of Education and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Working together with EdTech creators, educators, investors and policy makers, EDUCATE’s aim was to create an EdTech ecosystem which had evidence at its heart - understanding what truly works for learners and how to use technology to serve its users effectively. 

About the programme

EDUCATE was founded by Rose Luckin, a professor in Learner Centred Design and internationally regarded expert in AI, and delivered in partnership with UCL Engineering, BESA, F6S and Nesta.

By the end of its first three years, the programme was able to successfully support 260 EdTech companies. 

During the first three months of the programme, participants received an intensive course of workshops and training sessions on research and business. The knowledge gained from these workshops was then used to create a research proposal which would inform the ongoing development of their EdTech product. 

Participants who successfully completed the programme were eligible to apply for an EdWard, UCL EDUCATE’s own unique quality mark. EdWards eligible companies attained either an Evidence-Aware or Evidence-Applied EdWard, depending on the extent to which they met the necessary criteria.


The launch of UCL EDUCATE Digital

The programme’s success in championing the need for a research mindset in EdTech attracted the attention of policy makers, investors and educators, particularly through its Demo Day events at City Hall in 2018 and 2019. 

In light of the programme’s success, they’ve now launched UCL EDUCATE Digital – the world’s first research-focused online accelerator for EdTech startups. UCL EDUCATE Digital was created in partnership with GSV labs, a startup resourcing company based in Silicon Valley, and with investment from Santander Universities.

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