Barely a person in the English-speaking world has not heard of William Shakespeare and his works are universally recognized as an unparalleled trove of literary accomplishment. After all, they have stood the test of four centuries! Most educators agree that their presence in the sphere of English language education is unlikely to diminish any time soon.

The greatest genius, that perhaps human nature has yet produced, our myriad-minded Shakespeare.

— ST Coleridge
William Shakespeare

Engagement Challenge

Of course, Shakespeare’s language, being in places archaic, stylized, riddlesome and multi-layered, can be daunting for many students. And, as an educator, you will know that the challenge of teaching Shakespeare in the modern classroom is not just confined to tricky language. All the clever insights, idioms, puns, and literary devices in the world will be lost to the contemporary student if the material is not presented in a way that engages them. Many of today’s students are simply turned off when presented with reams of text on a page.

They like to parallel process and multi-task. They prefer their graphics before their text rather than the opposite... They are used to the instantaneity of hypertext, downloaded music, phones in their pockets, a library on their laptops, beamed messages and instant messaging.

— Educational thought-leader, Marc Prensky

Educators today also cite the difficulty of stimulating students’ interest in what is often perceived as a more “traditional” element of the curriculum. The question “How is Shakespeare relevant to me?” is not unheard of... But the weight of opinion for generations is well summed up by Shakespeare’s contemporary Ben Johnson who said that Shakespeare was “for all time”. His themes and explorations of the human condition are universal. But without accessibility, their relevance may never be revealed to the student...

He was not of an age but for all time...

— Ben Johnson
Our Solution

Our Solution

So how do we ensure that Shakespeare's works — a resource so rich in literature, philosophy, psychology, and human life itself — are not lost to these "digital natives"?

Crossing the Digital Divide

Shakespeare In Bits aims to address this potential disconnect by blending technology and content to provide a more stimulating, contemporary learning experience. Graphics, audio, and text combine to provide users with multiple cognitive inputs while on-demand rollover notes, clickable in-line translations, character bios etc also provide a degree of interactivity that keeps the student more fully engaged with the text. Importantly, this approach also allows the students to interact with challenging words or phrases in their original context, without resorting to “dumbed down” modern “translations”.

Pedagogical Perspective

The combination of animation, audio, and text delivered by each Shakespeare In Bits title also allows students to process information in a way that best suits their learning style. Multiple intelligence theorists such as Howard Gardner have argued that traditional educational methods best suit learners with a strong verbal or logical-mathematical intelligence. With Shakespeare In Bits, learners with a strong visual, auditory or kinesthetic intelligence are also catered to, through the rich graphic, aural, and interactive elements of the software.

Other influential thinkers, such as developmental psychologist Lev Vygotsky, have argued that active participation and social interaction can maximize learning outcomes in the classroom. Cognizant of this, Shakespeare In Bits allows students and teachers the flexibility to use the product on their own in a self-paced environment, or in a more collaborative group settings via a projector in the classroom.

Our school licensing also facilitates flipped classroom approaches, with students welcome to access the resources from home, if required by their school.

Accessible and Engaging

The aim of Shakespeare In Bits is to provide a teaching resource that make the Bard’s plays as accessible and engaging as possible. We believe that this is essential to help students of diverse learning styles and abilities to discover and truly appreciate the works of the most celebrated playwright in history.

Quite literally, the Bard hasn't been this easy to enjoy in 400 years!

Product Benefits

Key product benefits of Shakespeare In Bits — the only study guide you will need to teach, understand and appreciate Shakespeare's most celebrated works.

Academically Rigorous

Academically Rigorous

All our titles are academically rigorous, featuring complete, unabridged, standard play text and professional synchronized audio featuring renowned Shakespearean actors. The accompanying learning support features, including comprehensive notes and analyses, have been created by a team of highly qualified subject matter experts and instructional designers.

Anywhere Anytime Access

Anywhere Anytime Access

With “anywhere anytime” access to the program, students can revise what has been done in class, as well as study ahead on school computers or their own devices — all at their own pace. Because Shakespeare In Bits is now completely delivered online, it is device-agnostic and ideally suited to user environments where a variety of devices are in use including phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops.

Multiple Learning Settings

Multiple Learning Settings

Shakespeare In Bits Live! can be used by educators in-class as part of an organized lesson and by students — working individually or in groups. In addition, students can log on at home to access the plays using the same account — ensuring flexible access to the materials being taught.

Hassle Free!

Hassle Free!

A convenient, hassle-free way to get online access to our plays without any downloads, installations, or IT involvement. All you need is an internet connection, a standard browser and audio speakers or headphones to provide our engaging digital renditions of the Bard’s most celebrated plays to your students. The sign-up process is straightforward — your class or school can be up and running with 24/7 access within 24 hours!

Value for Money

Value for Money

Shakespeare In Bits is inexpensive to license with per student yearly access typically costing less than half the price of a standard hardcopy text! This ensures that Shakespeare In Bits plays remain an accessible and affordable teaching and learning solution for all schools, big or small. There’s no need to pay for hardcopies when your students can access the texts for a fraction of the price and with more value-added features!

Continuous Improvement

Continuous Improvement

Subscribers to Shakespeare In Bits will enjoy unrestricted access to any product updates or enhancements for the duration of subscription — at no extra charge. This is guaranteed because of our move to a web-based distribution model.

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By breaking the play into manageable “bits”, kids will not only learn the play but will enjoy the Bard. A breathtaking combination of high technology and classic literature.

— Jinny Gudmundsen, Editor, Computing With Kids magazine

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