Flashcards are cards bearing information, as words or numbers, on either or both sides. Usually, on the one side there is a question or a term, and on the other side, there is the answer or the definition. Such cards are widely used in education, especially in classroom settings.
Flashcards can also be used in online courses with lots of benefits for learning. They motivate learners to study and retain factual knowledge, especially when you know the right situation to use them:
Flashcards are the best tool to help learners review content after they have studied a course.
Why are flashcards so useful for knowledge?
They promote active recall, the process of actively retrieving memories out of our brain.
They utilize learners’ metacognitive faculties, that is the act of self-reflection when learners reveal the answer side of a flashcard: “How did my answer compare to this correct answer?” Learners find out quickly what they know and what they don’t know.
Learners can study them in a short amount of time.
But, before describing how you can create flashcards and embed them in Learnworlds let’s give out some design tips.
- Prompt learners to say the answers out loud.
- Add pictures in your flashcards to make them a lot more memorable. Good flashcards include images mixed with words. Our brains are very sensitive to imagery.
- Break down complex concepts into multiple simple questions.
- Create only one question for each flashcard so that learners can see clearly what they don’t know.
To understand how to create effective flashcards, let’s describe a bad flashcard first. Suppose you want to teach the different groups of elements in the periodic table (Alkali metals, transition metals, etc.). Maybe you go and make a flashcard like this:
Well, this flashcard is not so effective because when a learner tests themselves, they may know only some of those groupings. Or they may know all of them but one. In this case, the learner can’t see where they are really struggling, and then there is going to be an illusion of competence just by viewing the list on the back. So then, what is the right design?
Make many flashcards that only highlight each one of those groupings with each of their names in their backside.
This example indicates why it is essential to break down your concepts into multiple simple questions. Now, adapt this concept to your learning subject.
Let’s go to the technical part of flashcard creation: We are going to explain how you can create and embed flashcards in Learnworlds using Quizlet.
Quizlet costs $ 2,99 per month and allows users to study or create custom study sets and share them with friends or in a classroom. One of its great features is Flashcard creation.
What are the steps to create and embed flashcards with Quizlet?
1 In your free trial, Quizlet allows you to create your set of flashcards by adding your concepts and their definitions in specific fields as shown in the picture below:
The definitions can either be text or images. You also have the choices of auto define and voiceover. Pictures can be retrieved from your computer or even from Quizlet’s gallery.
2 Once you have created your items, you can create different study modes of them (learn, write, spell, test, match, gravity). To see your material converted into flashcards you click on “FLASHCARDS,” the second option, as you see in the picture below:
3 To embed those flashcards go back and find the embed option:
Choose the flashcard option and copy the embed code.
4 Go in Learnworlds, add a new learning activity, choosing “Embed.” Insert a name in the activity and save.
5Then, select settings and paste in there the embed code. Don’t forget to click on “Save” button.
6 Your flashcards are immediately previewed in your course player. So simple! And they look beautiful...
Now, your flashcards are ready to be used by your learners. When learners click on a flashcard, the card flips, and they hear the definition also by spoken voice.
By clicking options in left down corner students can choose which side of the flashcards they want to be tested in and also if they want to hear the audio or not.
How can my students use those flashcards?
Urge your students to study the flashcards for about 15 minutes, take a 5- minute break and then study some more. Tell them to wait a day and then, review them again.
This technique is called spaced repetition and is one of the most effective ways to study flashcards!
If you have a vast amount of flashcards and want your learners to achieve the best result, create a pdf of your flashcards. This way, students can also print them and cut them out.
Prompt learners to do so, so they can separate the flashcards with which they struggle more from those they are already familiar with. They can then practice only with that list (a technique called confidence-based repetition).
So, we hope you enjoyed this article and found useful for your course. As are every other technique flashcards are not a panacea for learning. So, be sure to use it in the right situation.