Formerly Top Hat Monocle, Top Hat Announces Rebrand and Free Pricing Plan

Top Hat Monocle is now simply Top Hat.

Today the Toronto startup that provides mobile-based classroom response systems introduced a new free pricing model and rebranded as Top Hat.

With regards to the dropping of monocle from the name, cofounder Mike Silagadze said “while we have a sentimental tie to the original name, we are incredibly excited to have a new brand identity that reflects that evolution. Additionally, it is much easier to spell.”

SEE ALSO: Top Hat Raises $8 Million in Series A Funding

Currently used in more than 350 universities worldwide, Top Hat is going freemium increase distribution. Launching today, students in courses with less than 30 students can now use the tool for free. While always free for educators, students of any class size were required to pay a $20/semester subscription fee to use the tool prior to today’s announcement.

“Our goal is to put Top Hat in the hands of every student and teacher” said Andrew D’Souza, Top Hat’s Chief Operating Officer. “With this new pricing model, we’re eliminating the barrier for instructors to give the platform a try in their class. We expect this to significantly accelerate the word-of-mouth-driven adoption we’re already seeing.”

While Top Hat is primarily used in college and university classes today, the company expects many K-12 teachers to adopt the platform under the new pricing model.

MORE: Top Hat Adds Two New Executives, Ralf Riekers and Malgosia Green

Top Hat leverages students’ own mobile or web-enabled devices to increase engagement, retention and comprehension. Working over WiFi or SMS, Top Hat enables students to respond to real-time questions and polls asked by their instructor, participate in discussions, compete in class-wide tournaments, run interactive simulations and more.

Case studies and data from current professors indicate grade increases of 3-5% and attendance increasing upwards of 30% when using TopHat.