The stellar-learning application

The app has been professionally developed in close collaboration with teachers and the software company JLS digital. Teachers’ experience and needs regarding teaching the vocabulary of a foreign language were acquired among 38 teachers from a School of the Canton of Valais in December 2019. The survey revealed that teachers expect an app to improve academic achievements and motivation of pupils. They would like pupils to be independent in using the app, but to have the opportunity to exchange with them about their performance when needed. The app should support usual pedagogical practices, and not create additional work.

The app implements learning principles known to be effective from basic memory research and applied educational research. All of these features can be varied within the app, which allows us to titrate learning duration and schedule to optimize learning success.

For users with an Apple device, you can download the stellar-learning.app from the App store. For users with a smartphone running with Android, you can download the stellar-learning.app from the Google Play store. For others, you can access the stellar-learning.app with a browser (preferably Chrome or Firefox) using this link (preferably with Chrome or Firefox) .

You can get a short insight into the app in the following clip.

Prof. Thomas Reber presents the stellar-learning.app to the moderator Maya Burgener in the program Bijoux.

Currently only available in German language.

The Learning Principles

  1. Vocabulary is learnt best when studying is distrubuted in multiple short and distributed learning sessions over time, rather the cramming everything into one long session. The app enables specification a distributed learnig regimen by setting duration and frequency of learning sessions and by sending reminders throughout the learning period.
  1. The app incorporates retrieval based learning by repeatedly asking the student to actively produce an answer rather than passively re-studying the vocabulary list. Answers can be provided via multiple choice display, text-input, and by speech-input which is then analysed by speech recognition software to determine the correctness of the spoken answer.
  1. Immediate feedback is given when the student has given an answer. In case the answer is incorrect, the correct solution is displayed immediately after the retrieval attempt. This immediate feedback has been shown to be highly beneficial for learning.

  1. The app speaks to multiple sensory modalities - vocabulary is presented by sounds, images as well as in written and spoken form.