With modern technology becoming more affordable and accessible, especially in the past 15 years, new opportunities have begun to open up in all aspects of our lives, and that includes education. The emergence of high-speed broadband connection and communication software has given way to another phenomenon: eLearning.
Bringing education right to your computer screen was and still is an inspiring idea, but not without its drawbacks. As opposed to traditional studies, where one has to attend classes in a certain place at a certain time, eLearning can happen anywhere, anytime, which raises some question regarding the quality and the effectiveness of such method of education. There is also the question of motivation among the students, as well as lack of teacher-student interaction.
And last, but not least, there is the issue of owning hardware that is capable of facilitating eLearning, and having sufficient knowledge of technology to be able to use it. While we can’t help you with your hardware, we can help you make your eLearning a more pleasant and effective experience. For that, we advise you to check out these 10 awesome tools.
One of the best ways to get students involved during eLearning is to create flashcards and/or quizzes. StudyBlue is an app which allows teachers to create cards in order to test the students’ knowledge on a certain subject, and students themselves can do the same wherever they go, because StudyBlue is available as an app for smartphones which run on Android or iOS. Best of all, it doesn’t require any real technical expertise on either party, and the registration process takes only a minute.
Writing stuff down while going back and forth between your notebook and screen during online lectures is unpractical and tiresome, which is why you should check out Notes.io. It acts like your digital notepad, allowing you to write down all the key information, right there in your browser. Now, your operating system probably has a similar piece of software for that, but Notes.io is a lot more practical, because there is no need for you to shuffle through multiple windows and tabs.
EduGeeksClub is your go-to destination in case you need assistance with your work and you can’t get in touch with your online teacher. This versatile online service gathers professional writers, researchers and scholars who can help you with your projects. Research, brainstorming, writing, proofreading, editing, they can really do it all. You can also commission one of their writers to write a paper on any topic which you can then use as a reference.
If your eLearning involves math, physics, or statistics of any kinds, you’re going to need a tool that will enable you to create plots, graphs, charts, which is why we recommend Plotly. If you find Excel too complicated, you will love Plotly, because it is web-based, free and far easier to use. But, it’s not just about accuracy with this app, because it also pays attention to the aesthetics of charts and graphs.
Text 2 Mind Map allows you to get a firmer grasp on your ideas and concepts by creating visual maps. The best things about the interface is it lets you use the app immediately, without the need to register or log in. Once you are done creating a mind map, you can send it to your email. We also love the animated nodes which bring a certain dynamic to the brainstorming process.
Although eLearning doesn’t require you to leave the comfort of your own room, you still need to come up with a good schedule. Todoist is an easy-to-use, yet powerful time management app which helps you create and organize a list of tasks and assignments, as well as share it with other users. It also allows for seamless integration with other services, such as Google Drive and Cloud Magic, among others.
Learning requires a distraction-free environment, which is easier said than done in the case of eLearning, because the inherent characteristic of the web is its endless number of distractions. StayFocusd enables you to eliminate those distractions by imposing a limit on how much time you spend surfing the web, instead of learning. Once the countdown clock runs out, you won’t be able to access any of the time-wasting pages.
eLearning tools can also change the way you study, and one of those tools is Anki. It is a program which is far superior to traditional learning techniques, because it improves your capacity to remember information, which means it’s up to you do decide to either learn more during the same time interval, or simply cut down on your studying time. Anki will also help you with remembering important dates and learning new languages and skills.
One of the most effective ways to remember complex pieces of data is through mnemonics. Now, we are all familiar with mnemonics on some of the more familiar subjects, but when you are faced with learning something new, it can be challenging to come up with a way to remember it. Fortunately, you can rely on Mnemonic Generator to do that for you. All you have to do is enter the information, and the app will generate a phrase which will help you memorize it more easily.
One of the most feared and downright disliked subjects among all students is math, and eLearning doesn’t make matters any better. However, Desmos Graphing Calculator can bring math closer to students and perform complex calculations, draw graphs, change axes, Fourier expansions and plenty of other advanced mathematical operations.
eLearning is an entirely different beast when compared to traditional methods of education, which means it requires a specific set of tools in order to be more effective. We advise you to master these 10, and make the most of your eLearning experience!
Written by: Antonio Tooley
Antonio is a hopeless optimist who enjoys basking in the world’s brightest colors. He loves biking to distant places and occasionally he gets lost. When not doing that he’s blogging and teaching ESL. He will be happy to meet you on Facebook and Twitter.