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August 31, 2015

5 back-to-school apps for mobile learners

Turn your smartphone into an educational device with these apps.

By Alexander Sword

Going back to school in September is no child’s favourite moment of the year. No piece of software is likely to fundamentally change that, but some of these educational apps might soften the blow of returning to the schoolroom. CBR rounds up some of the best back-to-school apps to help with education.

1. CourseSmart eTextbooks

This free app, available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone allows you to view the full text of over 7000 textbooks. It allows you to see all of your books in one place and easily navigate between them.

It also has a study tools feature, allowing you to make notes, highlights and search topics, so you can treat the eTextbooks just like their paper equivalents.


2. iHomework

Keeping track of homework is a bugbear even for the most conscientious students, but iHomework aims to make it easier with this organiser. You can arrange assignments by different parameters including deadline or course.

It also helps you to keep track of lesson times and locations. The app is only available on iOS and will set you back $1.99.


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3. Endless Wordplay

Most children don’t view education as fun, despite the best efforts of (some) teachers. However, this app aims to build skills in spelling and word-building through rhyming games and word puzzles.

Endless Wordplay aims to make the learning experience more lively through animations and ‘monsters’, so it’s definitely for the younger market. It is available for free on both iOS and Android but does have additional activities available through in-app purchase.


4. DuoLingo

For any students struggling with foreign tongues, the DuoLingo app for both iOS and Android offers language-learning on the go. The lessons are presented as games to test your listening, speaking and translation skills.

DuoLingo claims that 34 hours of the app equate to a term at university, so it’s definitely good value for the sum total of £0.


5. SimpleMind

Mind maps are not for everyone, but the SimpleMind app for iOS and Android aims to bring the process into the digital age, allowing you to organise your thoughts dynamically on your smartphone.

The free version is fairly simple, but for $5.99 in the app store you get the ability to share and export your work and import mind maps created in other apps or on other devices.

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