Online Education Startup Instructure Raises $8M

Instructure, a startup that develops and open-source online learning management system, has raised $8 million in Series B funding led by OpenView Venture Partners, EPIC Ventures, Eric Schmidt’s Tomorrow Ventures, and Tim Draper of Draper Fisher Jurveston. This investment brings Instructure’s total funding $9.2 million.

Instructure’s software, Canvas, presents a more streamlined online course management product than competitors like Blackboard. The hosted SaaS solution features an integrated gradebook, assessment tools, discussions, multiple assignment submission types, rubrics and web chat. The SaaS also includes drag-and-drop file uploads, HTML5 video and automatic speech-to-text conversion. And it integrates with Google Docs and Facebook.

In February, Instructure announced the availability of Canvas as an open source software product. The company is now servicing more than 30 educational institutions, the majority of which have switched from Blackboard to Canvas.

Instructure is led by Mozy Founder Josh Coates, who sold the online backup solution to EMC for $76 million in 2007.

Here’s a commercial the team created for the product, based on the Apple “1984″ commercial.