Our mission is to help deliver the world’s best educational and training outcomes validated by a long-term scientific approach. Area9 Lyceum adapts your content on a moment-by-moment basis to optimize your personal journey to mastery.

The most advanced
Learning platform
in the world

Whether you are a publisher, educator or corporation, Area9 Lyceum can help enable an interactive learning experience through a range of tools and services – making your content exceptionally agile, relevant and actionable for any learner.

Area9’s Rhapsode LEARNER™ is the personalized experience for the student or trainee. It applies science and technology to improve how and what is learned.

Convert your existing content into multimedia-rich personalized learning with powerful learning measurement with Area9 Rhapsode READER™

Rhapsode PUBLISHER™ is a comprehensive fully integrated workflow and content development environment, supporting both print and digital content production.

Area9’s Rhapsode CURATOR™ is the world’s most advanced content curation platform.

  • A streamlined work-flow with intuitive authoring tools and templates.
  • A guaranteed fast, effective, and affordable content production process with high-quality results.

Area9’s Rhapsode EDUCATOR™ tool is the ideal way for professors and teachers to ensure students become 21st Century Learners.
This back-end software includes:

  • A way to manage all assignments
  • Learning paths for each student
  • Advanced analytics
  • Early warning technology to highlight at-risk students

Area9 U Learning Engineer Certified: Become an expert as we teach you how to build, deploy and analyze an adaptive learning course in Area9 Rhapsode

  • Gain valuable skills that will help you throughout your career
  • Mentoring every step of the way from an experienced Area9 Lyceum Engineer
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Time Reduction
First Time Learning
Less Retention Effort


Ulrik Juul Christensen, MD

Executive Chairman (Area9 Group)
Chief Executive Officer (Area9 Lyceum)

Dr. Christensen is recognized worldwide as an expert in learning technology. He has pioneered adaptive learning, data-driven content development, simulation and debriefing technologies. He is responsible for the strategy of Area9 Group’s businesses, that span from purpose-built platforms for optimization of business processes for large corporations over digital product design to corporate training based on intelligent, adaptive learning.

He founded his first company, Sophus Medical, in 1997 while still in medical school. Sophus Medical was acquired by Laerdal Medical in 2002. Dr. Christensen was responsible for Laerdal’s global learning technologies initiatives from 2002–2006. Dr. Christensen co-founded Area9 Group in 2006, which has been at the forefront of adaptive and personalized learning with more than 1500 adaptive learning products based on the Area9 technologies and millions of students using the systems every semester. Area9 Education was sold to McGraw-Hill Education in 2014 and Area9 Learning was established to focus on adaptive learning in corporate and organizational environments.

Dr. Christensen was part of the McGraw-Hill Higher Education leadership team from 2011 to 2014 and the MHE Executive Leadership Team from February 2014 to 2016, where he stepped down to focus on the rapidly growing Area9 Innovation and Area9 Learning enterprises.

His primary focus is Area9 Lyceum which in January 2018 assembled all the group’s educational investments and technologies, and set out to create the 4th generation adaptive learning platform and the first generation supporting four-dimensional education.

Dr. Christensen is on the boards of the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and LEAP Innovations. He is also on the advisory board for Mastery Transcript Consortium, Transcend Education, CharacterLab, Center for Curriculum Redesign and Moonshots.org.

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Khurram Jamil, MD

President - Global Markets

Dr. Khurram Jamil is President Global Markets where he focuses on regional expansions and partnerships, as well as oversees projects for all levels of education and training.

Dr. Jamil’s entrepreneurial experience extends over 20 years. He has successfully led dozens of teams comprising of medical professionals and educational scientists, spearheaded large development and partnership efforts, and managed multi-million-dollar educational software development projects.

After earning his medical degree in Denmark in 2002, Dr. Jamil chose to advance health care outside the clinical arena through the development of novel educational simulators at Laerdal Medical. These simulators were used in the U.S. Department of Defense for Combat Medic Training. Following this, revolutionary screen-based simulators were created for the American Heart Association (HeartCode ACLS & PALS) used by millions of providers.

He co-founded Area9 in 2006 to evolve and expand these concepts beyond health care, while partnering with McGraw-Hill Education to deploy adaptive learning technology. Since then, more than 25 million students have used LearnSmart & SmartBook (property of McGraw-Hill Education – acquired in 2014).

Dr. Jamil is a cultural bridge builder and is involved with various cultural & art organizations to support building creative and reflective societies. He is a board member at the Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center at the Boston Public Library – a center than develops programs to inspire curiosity and learning among people of all ages by using cartographic materials to illuminate history, geography, world cultures, science, and contemporary issues. He is a board member of American Friends of SMK – The National Gallery of Denmark. He also on the Education Council of the Center for Global Education (CGE) at Asia Society.


Tashia Dam

Chief Pedagogy Officer

Ms. Dam has 10 years experience with developing intelligent, educational technologies and content at scale. She originally joined Area9 in 2008 and was part of the small team building the early versions of our adaptive systems. When Area9 was sold to McGraw-Hill, Ms. Dam was part of the McGraw-Hill transition team from 2014-2016.
From 2016 to 2018, Ms. Dam was VP. of Research and Innovation at Lix Technologies, and she brings significant state of the art knowledge of learning, education, pedagogics and technology.
Prior to joining Area9 in 2008, she was teaching at Institute of Pedagogics at Copenhagen University, from where she also earned her MA in Philosophy of Education & Theoretical Pedagogics.
Ms. Dam was expert advisor in the Danish Ministry of Education’s Council on Technology in Education timeboxed for 2017-2018, and she is on the Employer Panel Advisory Board at Institute of Pedagogics & Education, Århus University.
She also does peer-reviews for Association for Learning Technology, UK and regularly writes reviews of technology-philosophy books for the Danish magazine, Altinget.



Asger Alstrup Palm

Group Chief Technology Officer
Chief Architect

Mr. Palm has been an early pioneer of high-performance, agile programming. He is a specialist in translating computer science from the cutting edge academic environments to the solutions that address real commercially viable needs.

Mr. Palm has been part of the current leadership team since the owners’ first company (which he was a co-owner of) where he joined the team in 1998.

Mr. Palm and his second-in-command, Mr. Tommy Olesen, have built a unique team of the absolute best, high performance software architects. Their recruitment tests are considered amongst the hardest in the industry.


Karis Amata Zecchi

Learning Architect

Karis studied Physics at the University of Florence (BSc, Italy) and at the University of Copenhagen (MSc, DK). At the latter, she did a PhD in biophysics with a thesis on polarization in biomembranes.

Karis’ educational/pedagogical experience consists of more than ten years of teaching, and includes private tutoring to students from primary school to University students and teaching assistant activity in different courses at the Niels Bohr Institute.

After her research activity, she has been developing interactive educational material in the form of virtual laboratories simulations for both Web and VR.

In addition to being a learning engineer, Karis is the learning architect at Area9 for math where she is responsible for math content and content technology.


Kelly M. Mccready

Vice President,
Enterprise Solutions Architect

Kelly has been working in the education space for 10 years in the fields of medical education, higher education and technology. Her focus has been designing, delivering, and promoting learning programs that prompt progress through non-traditional education paths.

Kelly joined Area9 to bring this expertise to companies who want to make their training initiatives more effective and more impactful – both for their employees and their business. She has a strong belief that the ROI needs to be apparent to both parties in order to be successful. Kelly’s prior experience using, creating and selling adaptive technology allowed her to recognize the superiority of the Area9 biological adaptive model and the cost and time savings it brings to businesses and learners.

Kelly holds a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Colorado and an MBA in International Business from European University in Munich, Germany.


Niels Vildbrad

Chief Operating Officer

Mr. Vildbrad has several years of strategic business management experience incl. substantial M&A experience from healthcare-IT and educational industries. He has led cross-border teams from acquisitions through the integration phase, with focus on growth and streamlining of operations.

Prior to joining Area9, Mr. Vildbrad ran a US-division for a large listed German healthcare-IT company, where he completed a successful turnaround, re-establishing a sales organization and reduced customer churn.

He is responsible for all business development and partnerships for the Area9 Group and works closely with the executive chairman in the management of the group.

Mr. Vildbrad holds an M.Sc. in Economics & Management from Aarhus University of Denmark, and is based in Milan, Italy.


Richard Keaveny

Chief Product Officer

Richard is the Chief Product Officer at Area9 Lyceum, and is responsible for product vision, product strategy, product design, and the delivery of customer centric digital solutions to improve peoples’ lives through education.

Richard is an award winning, market facing visionary for innovative educational products and services. With more than 20 years of software experience in innovative technology for Higher Education, K12 and lifelong learning, Richard has held positions in global technology product development and management encompassing design, product delivery, sales, business development, Mergers/Acquisitions and implementation at McGraw-Hill Education, Pearson, and Cengage (Thomson). Richard was head of digital strategy for McGraw-Hill Higher Education, and led the company’s transition to adaptive technologies based on the Area9 technologies and platforms. Richard was also part of two education start-ups, both being acquired by global learning companies and he also spearheaded a start-up team within Pearson that was funded by the Pearson CEO.

Richard received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Western Ontario, Canada.


Lars Kirkeskov Sørup

Chief Technology Officer

Mr. Soerup combines the skill sets and experience of both start-ups and large corporate environments. Being one of the four main owners of Sophus Medical, Mr. Soerup has been on the journey building companies from scratch. When the current owners left Laerdal Medical to start Area9, Mr. Soerup stayed at Laerdal Medical to head up the R&D department and being a member of the executive management team of the company that is one of the largest emergency medical device, training and simulation companies globally

Mr. Soerup brings significant strategic leadership experience as well medical and educational product development experience.

Mr. Soerup has a M.Sc. in civil engineering from Technical University of Denmark with a specialty in electronics and mathematical modeling.


Nick Howe

Chief Learning Officer

Senior executive with substantial experience building global corporate learning functions and a global professional services capability. Strong focus on developing strategies and translating visions in to operating plans. Excellent multi-region matrix management skills.

Area9 Lyceum’s Chief Learning Officer from 2016-2020 – retired January 2021. Expert in corporate training strategy and education technologies



Vladimir Ufnarovsky

Chief Information Officer

Mr. Ufnarovsky has 25 years experience in the IT industry, including 15 years of executive leadership in the high-tech companies specializing on the scientific-intensive development.
Having joined the Area9 family in 2006 he has been able to attract top talent and established hyper-agile computer scientist teams distributed globally.

Mr. Ufnarovsky has graduated from St.Petersburg State University, Software Engineering department, the World Champions in the International Collegiate Programming Contests of 2000, 2001, 2014 and 2016.

He started his career in 1994 as a programmer, quickly moved to management positions and after 10 years became a shareholder and the COO of a 300+ employees company.
Mr. Ufnarovsky successfully created and exited three start-up companies in Computer Vision and in the game development industry.


Kristen Raffetto

Chief of Staff

Kristen has 17 years’ accounting and finance experience.  Before joining the Area9 team in 2014, she served as the Assistant Controller and HR Manager for a private healthcare consulting firm.  She specializes in GAAP Compliance, staff recruitment, and maintaining operational excellence.

As Chief of Staff for the CEO, Kristen leads the Product Management task force, as well as overseeing US finance and HR.

Kristen holds a BS in Accounting from Bryant University.


Marc Berg, MD

Chief Clinical Advisor

Dr. Berg is an internationally recognized and respected clinician, scientist and educator. He serves as Professor of Clinical Pediatrics (Critical Care) at Stanford University and Director of the REVIVE Initiative in Resuscitation Excellence at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford. He has published numerous manuscripts in over 20 years of academic medicine, primarily in critical care, resuscitation and CPR performance. In teaching, he led the 2010 American Heart Association Emergency Cardiac Care Pediatric Subcommittee in producing Guidelines for Pediatric Resuscitation and the PALS and PEARS courses, taken by millions of students worldwide. He has been with Area9 since it’s inception and is currently Chief Clinical Advisor for the Area9 Group.


Tommy Olesen

Executive Vice President,
Core technologies

Mr. Olesen was educated at the University of Copenhagen as computer
scientist, specializing in semantics and implementation of programming languages, areas crucial in building the Area9 tools that help people realize their potential with IT.

Mr. Olesen has 16 years of experience in adaptive learning solutions and computer simulation, agile software development and managing software development in geographically distributed teams.


Claus Biermann, MD MPH

Chief Medical Advisor
Healthcare Education

Dr. Claus W. Biermann serves as Area9 Lyceum’s Chief Medical Advisor, Healthcare Education. He advises on our growing healthcare partnerships, including NEJM Group’s Knowledge+, American Association of Clinical Chemistry, Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery and future partners. He also advises on Area9’s efforts to partner with the healthcare industry, both for internal and external stakeholder medical education.

Dr. Biermann has a background as MD from Medical University Bochum in Germany and a Master in Public Health (MPH) from University Bielefeld in Germany. He was trained in transplantations and abdominal surgery as well as urology at several international universities, including serving at University of Chicago. He has been a Research Fellow for Experimental Research and has an extensive publication list.

Dr. Biermann was very active in Outcomes & Value Based Healthcare Research next to basic scientific clinical work and publications. He worked as an Executive cross sectoral in all major healthcare industries; Pharmaceutical, MedTech, IT and Services.His last position was Chief Strategy & Healthcare Policy Officer in a global renal care services company.

Claus was appointed Visiting Professor Medicine at Hochschule für Gesundheit University of Applied Sciences in Bochum. The HSG is the only university in Germany to offer five bachelor and master  degree programs for healthcare professions.


Elma Hrustic

Senior Vice President,
Digital Transformation

Elma is a Senior Executive with experience in several industries.

She has a proven track record in successfully running large scale commercial and strategic roles with ability to lead and manage teams on a global scale.

Furthermore, Elma is a strategic thinker with an ability and passion for breaking complexity into simple, fast and tangible business solutions, staying on top of technological development and market needs and driving digital transformation initiatives on all levels. Initiator of change.

She is a strong advocate of and believer in new technology and approaches that empower people and companies to reach their potential.


Jan Krogh Larsen

Chief Product Officer

Jan Krogh Larsen is a senior leader in the publishing and EdTech industry. He holds a Master’s Degree from University of Copenhagen (English, Learning and Pedagogics) and was employed in Egmont from 2004 to 2018 (Danish media group with activities in 30 countries and 6,200 employees).

As an Editor, Editorial Director and Editor-in-chief, Jan has knowledge and hands-on-experience of all aspects of the publishing industry. As president for Egmont’s high school publishing house running editorial, sales, marketing, organizational development, innovation andstrategy and as the architect of a national digital platform used by 10 competing publishing houses Jan has executed successful business innovation with special focus on effective publishing systems across companies.

Today, Jan is head of development and product management of the publishing and educational platform from Area9 Lyceum and he has the overall responsibility for commercialization and partnerships in the K20 space, globally.


Hayat Feghaly

Learning Architect

Hayat Feghaly joined Area9 in 2015 and designs and builds digital learning architecture. Hayat interacts with industry professionals, learning experts, and our partners; translating course content into adaptive delivery which makes it easier for employees and corporations to achieve their educational goals. She creates learning courses for corporations by translating subject matter and pedagogical knowledge into just the right product to teach it to the employees.

Prior to working at Area9 Hayat was employed with the Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance as an Instructional Designer. She also served as a Program Manager for Printing, Graphic Arts and Multimedia at the Australian Institute of Technology and Education. Additionally, she worked as an Instructional Designer at the Western Australian Government Department of Training and Education in Australia.

Hayat has a Masters in Learning and Development (Learning Design), a Bachelor of Multimedia and a Diploma in Assessment and Workplace Training.


Marisa Batey

Head of Marketing

Marisa Batey has 8+ years of experience in marketing. While familiar with every aspect of the trade, she specializes in lead generation and cross-channel strategy for inbound methodology.

At Area9, she is responsible for leading and coordinating Marketing operations in all locations (North America, Europe and MENA) where she manages projects, defines briefs, liaises with the creative team, and organizes the company’s CRM system.

Before joining the Boston team, Marisa worked at one of the top Marketing firms in the country. There she cut her teeth in client digital and direct marketing projects in a structured, collaborative and high-stakes marketing environment.

Marisa developed a keen understanding of human psychology after graduating from the University of California, San Diego where she focused on Sociology and Business. When she isn’t developing marketing workflows or managing campaigns, Marisa is a strong advocate of advancing new ideas for education. She has been recognized academically as a leader of social justice with multiple scholarships and continues to work towards making a societal difference by volunteering with nonprofit organizations to advance women’s rights and access to healthcare.

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