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John Baker, president and CEO of Desire2learn.

JENNIFER ROBERTS/The Globe and Mail

These five businesses are making their mark in the education space:

Desire2Learn: Based in Kitchener, Ont., it began making learning management systems for online classes in 1999. It's now used at more than 650 universities in 20 countries.

Knewton: An adaptive platform that uses artificial intelligence to personalize learning. Arizona State University was able to decrease course withdrawals and increase pass rates.

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Coursera: Online courses taught by professors from 62 universities. Most classes are free and some count for university credit.

Top Hat Monocle: Students can use their own devices to answer questions in class. The company is building an integrated marketplace for professors to sell course content.

Smart Technology: Invented the interactive whiteboard in 1991, and since then it has sold more than two million units.

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