iTooch apps analyzed
In March, we had the pleasure to exchange views on the design and impact of iTooch apps in learning, with Laetitia, a specialist in cognitive psychology and e-learning processes. She passed iTooch apps under scrutiny and here is her diagnosis:
“Applied to education, cognitive psychology uses its theories to optimize the transmission of knowledge and skills. In this article, we will highlight why iTooch apps are ideal fun learning solutions for children:
Simplicity and efficiency
The design of iTooch apps draws its inspiration from two major areas : teaching and video game approaches. Touch screen devices stimulate children’s curiosity, who are in most cases attracted by the interaction with screens.
The simplicity of iTooch apps allows children to recognize shapes with which they are familiar: iTooch apps offer chapters and sub-chapters of learning materials. The design of the apps, very simple and without embellishments, helps the child to navigate through the application without difficulty. Children can not divert their attention from the first goal : learning.
During the activities, children can access to a lesson summary if necessary. Every lesson is illustrated, which is very useful, especially in geometry, because the child can make a mental representation of the lesson, and understand the lesson better, thanks to two representations: visual and oral. Children have access to hints during the exercises and they help them to remember the most important information about the lessons. This mechanism stimulates the memory.
Another important aspect of iTooch apps is that the child learns at his own pace: he can choose the subject that he wants, he is not obliged to follow the order of the chapters. That is precisely what increases his engagement and the effectiveness of learning. The student is not passive but active in his willingness to learn. A student who chooses to work on his activities is more motivated than a student who works under orders.
Another aspect of motivation comes from iTooch apps’ reward mechanisms. Educational psychologists have underlined that using of virtual rewards such as badges or trophies, used in video games, are effective ways of increasing motivation and engagement of students in learning. Virtual rewards bring out what we call extrinsic motivation: a student will use the app to learn because of the anticipated satisfaction and reward they will get from accomplishing a level.
The approach of gamification in learning provides a positive learner’s behavior. Furthermore, it fosters the child to win more badges and therefore go further in the game and pass more levels in the app. In iTooch apps, this is materialized by a judo belt, which is attributed to the child at the end of the assessment, and also after each achieved level and after accumulation of certain points.
Research has proved that it is normal for children to pay less attention than adults, so when it comes to homework, children tend to lose interest easily. iTooch apps address this point: exercises are short and enables children to validate a competence very quickly therefore enabling parents to follow their children’s progress closely.
By merging knowledge and fun on iTooch apps, eduPad has created the perfect recipe for learning!”