Apps in Education

Young people adapt to apps like ducks to water

More and more people are using their phones to learn. Whether in their spare time or as a learning tool to supplement whatever they’re doing, it’s clear that the app store is a new and exciting resource for education.

But with all choices available, what are the best apps to use? We’ve got you covered for 4 different categories, whether you’re a teacher or a student:

Games for Brains

Learning doesn’t have to be all about new things but also reinforce what you have already learned. That’s why apps like QuizUp and Lumosity are perfect.

QuizUp is designed first and foremost as a mobile game but has huge educational properties. Through many different rounds over various different topics, people can relax and learn at the same time by being quizzed against another player, leading to a strong learning environment. Or you can take the solitary approach and play against yourself!

Lumosity challenges you to quiz-like games that let you learn many new things across a range of different topics.

These kind of ‘cognitive training exercises’ are led by science to give different sections on speed, memory, attention, flexibility, problem solving, words, and maths. It also gives statistics on your performance.

Both of these brain game apps are perfect for education. They allow young and old to experience a hand held way that is quick and easy to supplement learning. They teach things that you won’t find elsewhere. Plus, they’re free.

You can even select specific topics, not just random ones.


One key app type that all people in education use is one that lets you organise your homework, your times, your schedule, and any other activities you need just to function. A good app that I used for many years is MyHomework.

It allows you to keep a useful track on exactly what you need to do and when you need to do it. It even allows for customisation which really helps when you want to glance quickly at what you need to do. It gives you a to-do list of your tasks and their details.

Despite the name is goes further than homework and lets you organise your class schedule so that you never miss a thing.

Plus, teachers can set homework with the app so there’s an even more efficient way to get that ever-dreaded set of work.

Though it offers in-app purchases, the free version is perfectly functional, and sometimes schools buy a subscription to get students using the ‘pro’ version without fuss!

Class Collaboration

If you’re a teacher or a student, Kahoot! may be for you. An interactive game that can be utilised for learning or for fun, this app can turn the class into one big brain to solve issues.

Designed as an app in collaboration with its web-based counterpart (though the latter isn’t necessary), it can be used wherever and whenever to help the class collaborate.

The quiz system is fun and fresh for students and allows them to answer without the pressure of putting their hand up. That can lead to everyone answering at once as opposed to one at a time, making the process much faster and getting every student’s input.

Screen Time (Wasting)

Learning and organising on your phone is good, but constantly being on your screen can be distracting. Whether it’s social media or watching movies, being on the phone can distract even the most focused of workers.

That’s where apps like Forest come in. Forest makes it easy to put your phone down. If you stay off your phone for long enough, the app will plant a tree in real life. If you break your self-imposed ban and look at the phone, your tree will quietly disappear!

This incentivises time away from screens and a sense of environmentalism, as users can achieve great things by staying focused. If you need to get away from distractions to study, do homework, or just be in the moment, this app helps.

The takeaway

We have only scratched the surface in this brief investigation. The bottom line is that using apps on devices like smartphones and even smart watches is a valid channel for education and learning in young people. It’s a natural medium for them.

Here at The Public Purse, we explore both what data is or should be available more generally, and how technology can be shaped to use it for better lives and experiences – in the young, especially.

That can be used for better lifestyle choices, nutrition, exercise, mental health as well as education. The potential is only limited by imagination and desire to achieve change for the better by the powers that be. Join us in exploring and promoting this exciting new medium of apps.


Resources: Apps Included in this Article:

These five apps mentioned above will level up the way you learn and make sure you’re as efficient as ever.

  1. Lumosity
  2. QuizUp
  3. myHomework
  4. Kahoot!
  5. Forest

All can be found in the App Store or on Google Play.