AWS Machine Learning Blog

Bongo Learn provides real-time feedback to improve learning outcomes with Amazon Transcribe

Real-time feedback helps drive learning. This is especially important for designing presentations, learning new languages, and strengthening other essential skills that are critical to succeed in today’s workplace. However, many students and lifelong learners lack access to effective face-to-face instruction to hone these skills. In addition, with the rapid adoption of remote learning, educators are seeking more effective ways to engage their students and provide feedback and guidance in online learning environments. Bongo is filling that gap using video-based engagement and personalized feedback.

Bongo is a video assessment solution that enables experiential learning and soft skill development at scale. Their Auto Analysis™ is an automated reporting feature that provides deeper insight into an individual’s performance and progress. Organizations around the world—both corporate and higher education institutions—use Bongo’s Auto Analysis™ to facilitate automated feedback for a variety of use cases, including individual presentations, objection handling, and customer interaction training. The Auto Analysis™ platform, which runs on AWS and uses Amazon Transcribe, allows learners to demonstrate what they can do on video and helps evaluators get an authentic representation of a learner’s competency across a range of skills.

When users complete a video assignment, Bongo uses Amazon Transcribe, a deep learning-powered automatic speech recognition (ASR), to convert speech into text. Bongo analyzes the transcripts to identify the use of keywords and filler words, and assess clarity and effectiveness of the individual’s delivery. Bongo then auto-generates personalized feedback reports based on these performance insights, which learners can utilize as they practice iteratively. Learners can then submit their recording for feedback from evaluators and peers. Learners have reported a strong preference for receiving private and detailed feedback prior to submitting their work for evaluation or peer review.

Why Bongo chose Amazon Transcribe

During the technical evaluation process, Bongo looked at several speech-to-text vendors and machine learning services. Bruce Fischer, CTO at Bongo, says, “When choosing a vendor, AWS’ breadth and depth of services enabled us to build a complete solution through a single vendor. That saved us valuable development and deployment time. In addition, Amazon Transcribe produces high-quality transcripts with timestamps that allow Bongo Auto Analysis™ to provide accurate feedback to learners and improve learning outcomes. We are excited with how the service has evolved and how its new capabilities enable us to innovate faster.”

Since launch, Bongo has added the custom vocabulary feature of Amazon Transcribe. For example, it can recognize business jargon that is common in sales presentations. Foreign language learning is another important use case for Bongo customers. The automatic language detection feature in Amazon Transcribe and overall language support (37 different languages for batch processing) allows Bongo to deliver Auto Analysis™ in several languages, such as French, Spanish, German, and Portuguese.

Recently, Bongo launched auto-captioning for their on-demand videos. Powered by Amazon Transcribe, captions help address the accessibility needs of Bongo users with learning disabilities and impairments.

Amazon Transcribe enables Bongo’s Auto Analysis™ to quickly and accurately transcribe learner videos and provide feedback on the video that helps a learner employ a ‘practice, reflect, improve’ loop. This enables learners to increase content comprehension, retention, and learning outcomes, and reduces instructor assessment time since they are viewing a better work product. Teachers can focus on providing insightful feedback without spending time on the metrics the Auto Analysis™ produces automatically.

– Josh Kamrath, Bongo’s CEO.

Recently, Dr. Lynda Randall and Dr. Jessica Jaynes from California State University, Fullerton, conducted a research study to analyze the effectiveness of Bongo in an actual classroom setting on student engagement and learning outcomes.[1] The study results showed how the use of Bongo helped increase student comprehension and retention of concepts.


The Bongo team is now looking at how to incorporate other AWS AI services, such as Amazon Comprehend to do further language processing and Amazon Rekognition for visual analysis of videos. Bongo and their AWS team will continue working together to create the best experience for learners and instructors alike. To learn more about Amazon Transcribe and test it yourself, visit the Amazon Transcribe console.

[1] Randall, L.E., & Jaynes, J. A comparison of three assessment types of student engagement and content knowledge in online instruction. Online Learning Journal. (Status: Accepted. Publication date TBD)

About Bongo

Bongo is an embedded solution that drives meaningful assessment, experiential learning, and skill development at scale through video-based engagement and personalized feedback. Organizations use our video workflows to create opportunities for practice, demonstration, analysis, and collaboration. When individuals show what they can do within a real-world learning environment, evaluators get an authentic representation of their competency.

About the Author

Roshni Madaiah is an Account Manager on the AWS EdTech team, where she helps Education Technology customers build cutting edge solutions to transform learning and enrich student experience. Prior to AWS, she worked with enterprises and commercial customers to drive business outcomes via technical solutions. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling, reading and cooking without recipes.