The program encourages students to examine global problems. (Photo courtesy of Shout web site)

Shout encourages students to take on real-world challenges through online collaboration with their peers. (Photo courtesy of Shout web site)

A new partnership between Microsoft Corp., the Smithsonian Institution, and TakingITGlobal will encourage teachers to use educational technology to improve the way students learn. The partnership, called Shout, will help teachers integrate project-based learning to develop students’ problem-solving skills by having them team up with their peers around the globe to solve real-world challenges.

Shout was announced at the Worldwide Innovative Education Forum in Africa. Representatives from the groups involved said it will help teachers and students use educational technology to address some of the world’s most pressing environmental issues through online collaboration, while also teaching students social responsibility.

More than $1 million will be directed to Shout over the next three years in hopes of creating a global network that connects millions of teachers and students as they attempt to solve real-world challenges affecting land, air, and water. Online collaboration plays a key part in the project.

Anthony Salcito, vice president of Worldwide Public Sector Education at Microsoft, said the partnership is a solid step in helping students and teachers across the globe connect to solve common problems, and in helping teachers use educational technology to boost students’ problem-solving skills through a project-based learning approach that is relevant to students’ lives.