Mindsurf Networks Inc., a provider of wireless computing solutions for the K-12 market, announced it will acquire Discourse Technologies Inc., a developer of groupware applications for the school market. The Discourse product suite is designed to provide real-time individual student assessment.

“The Discourse product suite adds powerful teaching functions to the Mindsurf Networks solution,” said Bruce Davis, CEO of Mindsurf Networks. “In conjunction with our wireless technology, teachers can now administer electronic curriculum and assessments to their students in a controlled and direct fashion. They will immediately know which students understand a concept and which students do not. That kind of real-time feedback leads to results.”

With the integration of the Discourse software into the Mindsurf Networks solution, teachers will be able to follow all students’ learning in real-time and assess comprehension while teaching. As a result, they can instantly remediate, provide additional resources and even track and score results. For example, a teacher conducting a lesson on metamorphosis can push a video clip from the internet to all students, which they view on their individual handheld computers. The teacher can ask them questions and then watch their responses–student by student–on a PC.

Mindsurf Networks delivers a wireless computing solution for K-12 educators and students that enables ubiquitous, handheld computing at very low cost. Launched in July 2000, Mindsurf Networks is a $70 million joint venture between Sylvan Ventures, the venture arm of Sylvan Learning Systems Inc., and Aether Systems Inc.