Putting Education in Educational Apps

Director of the Infant Language Laboratory at Temple University, Kathy Hirsh-Pasek and Director of the Brandywine Child Development Lab at Penn State University, Brandywine, Jennifer Zosh wrote a paper on the surge in educational apps developed for children that the market has seen in recent years. Their research is based upon extensive work done by the Science of Learning project out of John Hopkins University and observes a trend in educational apps as learning resources that has largely remained untapped from regulation and testing. Outlining ideas for how educational apps can become more evidence based is the crux of their report, which highlights four pillars of learning that can help evaluate current apps and aid development of future educational apps.

The four pillars of learning are:

  1. active involvement
  2. engagement with learning materials
  3. meaningful experiences
  4. social interaction.

In their work, Hirsh-Pasek and Zosh also share a new model for rating educational apps. Putting Education in “Educational” Apps: Lessons From the Science of Learning aims to provide a framework for making educational apps for children that are effective and align with learning processes.

Digital Issues