Hypothesis for Higher Education

Hypothesis empowers students and educators to highlight and comment on digital course materials, helping to develop reading comprehension and critical thinking skills, increase student engagement, and create community in online, hybrid, and in-person courses.

Social annotation works right on top of existing course content to:

  • Develop foundational and advanced skills in reading, writing and critical thinking
  • Build connections that support community within the class and across campus
  • Encourage peer-to-peer learning and strengthen digital collaboration skills
  • Provide instructors with early and ongoing insight into student engagement, comprehension and skill development


Explore our collection of conversations with teachers, example assignments and grading rubrics to get ideas about how to add social annotation to your courses.

  • A video discussion about the power of social annotation to build community and critical thinking in a range of subjects. Jeremy Dean sits down with Silvia Muller, Educational Researcher and Instructor at Rutgers; Christie DeCarolis, Instructional Designer and an adjunct professor at Rutgers-Camden; and Rachel Derr, Director of Pre-licensure Programs and Clinical Assistant Professor at Rutgers University Camden School of Nursing.

  • A video discussion about from Mary Isbell of the University of New Haven and John Stewart of the University of Oklahoma, both of whom have long used social annotation to make reading active, visible, and social with their students, and see it as essential for knowledge sharing, community building, and student success.

  • A video discussion with guests Carmen Johnston from Chabot College and Denise Maduli-Williams from San Diego Miramar College to learn how they are using social annotation to engage students from “all walks of classrooms.”

What teachers are saying

Example courses using Hypothesis

  • English and Composition
  • Foreign Languages
  • Biology
  • History
  • Political Science
  • Education
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • First Year Experience

Some Hypothesis partners with an English and Composition focus

Download a one-page handout to share with colleagues via print or email.

Thumbnail of handout: Hypothesis for Higher Education.