The educational app industry is the fastest growing area these days. Technavio reports: by 2024, the market will increase by $247.46 billion. During the coronavirus pandemic, most organizations switched to online courses and educational programs. 40% of these companies said that online learning helped boost their income by more than 25%. How to create a high-quality educational app — and how much to invest in that?
To start educational app development, choose what type of solution you want to develop.
Educational Mobile Apps for Kids
One of the best ways to keep your child busy with learning is to let him play with a phone. Children adore these apps with their interactive, fun, and story-rich learning processes. They can study math, physics, chemistry, new languages — quite complex things, in short, — by playing.
Students that use apps increase their performance on exams, the study by Houghton Mifflin shows. 20% more students reached Advanced level in mathematics by using apps. Educational apps explain the material simpler, students can return to it any time — so they have higher chances of getting a good grade.
Online apps not only help teachers to improve their skills but also help in developing lessons and assessing students. Apps offer teachers different techniques and methods that help track students’ progress.
Other classifications divide e-learning apps into skills-specific (like Duolignuo) and generic — that cover a range of topics (like Khan Academy). There are educational apps that are meant to be used within institutions (apps for school and universities), businesses (LMS for corporate learning), or individually.
Start with the simplest things — add to your educational platform the most crucial features.
Before users reach the training materials, they should register. Here are the tips on how to engage the user from the very beginning:
- Keep the signing-up process simple. Don’t waste the users’ time filling in forms. It should be a simple and easy way to join your community
- Don’t ask a lot. Include the name, email to verify the person, password, and nothing more. Don’t force the users to fill in questionnaires or quizzes during onboarding.
- Show your strengths. Make the first screen engaging and articulate the value of your app in the language of your audience so that users won’t delete it without trying
An educational app contains a lot of information — and it has to be easy for a user to find what they’re looking for. That is why you should install a good search algorithm. Combine several types of search:
- Voice search
- Search by keywords
- Search by recent queries
- Search by users’ preferences, etc.
A profile should include a user avatar, name or nickname, interests and hobbies — if they are relevant for your data analytics efforts — or if you think users would appreciate the idea of sharing them with an app’s online community.
Make paying quick and easy for your users. Provide them with the most popular payment methods. For instance, you can use PayPal, Venmo, Google/Samsung/Apple Pay, Braintree, Stripe — the options are plenty. Pay attention to transaction fees, security, and accessibility for different platforms when choosing payment methods. Remember: if you collect financial info from your users, you need strong security safeguards for all operations connected to users’ data within your company (and that’s not just app development.)
The menu is the most important tool that guides a user through their journey to their goals.
- Make it huge and visible
- Don’t hide the filters/other sorting options
- Choose informative icons
- Make it easy to navigate
Add push notifications to remind users about your app. Personalize notifications. Balance the timing out. Notifications should work as a gentle reminder to learn without annoying users.
None of the technical functionality matters if you have boring, unstructured course materials and poor instructional design (ISD). Efficient learning apps lean into learners’ choices, encourage them to practice via feedback and non-intrusive recommendations. To root your app’s functionality in principles of active and meaningful learning, contact people with experience in ISD and experts in whatever you want to teach. Together, they can develop a study program and mechanics that will help your users learn better.
Test your app among learners. With domain experts and scientists who help you with the course program and instructional designers (preferably familiar with gamification in general and octalysis framework in particular), you can react to learners’ feedback and create a powerful, user-centric tool for learning. Don’t forget to allocate resources for extensive user testing at the beginning of the development.
|Basic Complexity||Medium Complexity|
|Basic features like user log in, user profile, file uploading, basic search, messaging, and push notifications||Basic features plus complex ones like social authorization via email or social media, in-app purchases, and so on.|
|No advanced features||Advanced features and API-based connection with other applications|
|~$25 000||~$50 000|
Only big businesses use such types of apps. And the cost is relatively high: from $75 000 and more. The following features that increase the cost:
- In-app calls
- Data synchronization with more than two devices
- Video chats
- Native features
- Online streaming
- Data gathering and analytics
- AI-driven personalization features
Spare no money for high-quality UI/UX design. Invest in the development of your brand’s specific visual style for users to easily recognize you.
Depending on how much you plan to spend, choose the right platform for app development:
The e-learning industry is steadily growing. With the majority of educational organizations providing some sort of remote learning for their students, it’s fair to assume it will keep doing so.
To create a really helpful e-learning platform, one must understand how to relay principles of active learning within digital constraints — and, for sure, there are multiple ways of doing so: via different gamification tools, video lessons, challenging homework, and so on.
The cost of app development will vary depending on how sophisticated the instructional design behind your e-learning project is. The good idea is to start small. Select one or two features that make your learning app uniquely helpful to a small audience — and expand from there. Good luck!