Apps and Tools

Enhance your teaching and engage your students with a wide range of educational apps and tools. Discover innovative resources to create dynamic content, foster collaboration, assess learning outcomes, provide feedback, and explore immersive virtual simulations. Explore these apps and tools to transform your teaching, foster student engagement, and create dynamic learning experiences. Incorporating technology into your instructional practices opens up new possibilities for interactive and personalized learning, empowering your students to thrive in the digital age.

Content Creation and Multimedia Tools 
Unleash your creativity and captivate your students with powerful content creation and multimedia tools. Explore applications for creating interactive presentations, engaging videos, infographics, podcasts, and more. These tools enable you to present information in visually appealing and interactive ways, enhancing student understanding and retention. Note: The listed tools are examples. Our institution does not possess institutional licenses for them unless otherwise indicated. However, many offer free versions. For personal licenses, contact the CITS helpdesk.

Presentation/Screen Recording
Interactive Content
  • SoftChalk - interactions and branching scenarios 
  • H5P - embed interactions in a web page
  • EdPuzzle - embed text, audio, or quiz in video
Video Hosting/Streaming
Audio Recording
Graphic Design
Multimedia Production
  • Anchor – podcast creation and hosting
  • Audacity – audio production and editing
  • Brush Ninja - GIF animation tool
  • Educreations – Interactive whiteboard recording
  • Loom – screen recording
  • Lumen5 – video-making (turn text into videos)
  • Powtoon – animated video design
  • Showme - interactive whiteboard with screen recorder
  • Soundtrap - Audio editing tool
  • Vocaroo – audio recording
Book Design
Web Design


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Online Tools for Teaching and Learning by Torrey Trust (2022) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Collaboration and Group Work Apps 
Facilitate effective collaboration and group work with dedicated apps and platforms. Discover tools that enable seamless communication, document sharing, and real-time collaboration among students and educators. Foster teamwork, encourage idea exchange, and create a supportive online environment that enhances collective learning and problem-solving. Note: The listed tools are examples. Our institution does not possess institutional licenses for them unless otherwise indicated. However, many offer free versions. For personal licenses, contact the CITS helpdesk.

Web Conferencing
Collaborative Projects
Communication Tools
Digital Whiteboards
  • Google Drawings – Virtual whiteboard for drawing
  • IdeaBoardz – Sticky note virtual bulletin board
  • Jamboard – Whiteboard tool as a set of slides
  • Lino – Sticky note whiteboard tool
  • – Digital curation tool
  • Padlet – Community-centered whiteboard tool
  • Trello – Note-based collaborative whiteboard tool
  • Twiddla – Basic whiteboard tool
Learning/Project Management Systems
  • Basecamp – Project management and group communication tool
  • Google Classroom – Classroom learning platform for Google
  • Schoology – Standard learning management system

Creative Commons License
Online Tools for Teaching and Learning by Torrey Trust (2022) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Assessment and Feedback Tools 
Streamline your assessment processes and provide timely feedback to students using assessment and feedback tools. Explore digital platforms that allow you to create quizzes, surveys, and assignments, as well as tools that provide automated grading and analytics. These tools help you track student progress, identify areas for improvement, and provide personalized feedback to enhance learning outcomes. Note: The listed tools are examples. Our institution does not possess institutional licenses for them unless otherwise indicated. However, many offer free versions. For personal licenses, contact the CITS helpdesk.

Response Systems
Audio/Video Feedback & Discussion
  • Flip - video-based discussions - institutionally available via MS Office 365 
  • Kaizena - shared multimedia annotations
Quizzes & Polls
Interactive Videos
  • Edpuzzle – Videos with quiz questions and prompts
  • Playposit – Web-based video platform for formative assessment
  • TED-Ed – Educational videos with formative assessment questions and  discussions
  • Classkick – Interactive, real-time assessment
  • Formative – Interactive, real-time assessment
  • Floop – Visual feedback tool
  • JoeZoo – Google add-on for summative and formative assessment
  • Mote - Audio feedback tool
  • Nearpod - Formative assessment tool
  • Pear Deck – Interactive, real-time or asynchronous assessment


Creative Commons License
Online Tools for Teaching and Learning by Torrey Trust (2022) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources 
Immerse your students in interactive learning experiences through virtual simulations and interactive resources. Discover applications and platforms that provide realistic simulations, virtual field trips, 3D models, and interactive learning modules. These tools bring complex concepts to life, enabling students to explore and understand abstract ideas in a hands-on and engaging manner.

What are Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources?

Virtual simulations and interactive learning resources are digital tools designed to replicate real-world scenarios, environments, and experiences. These tools enable students to actively participate in simulated activities, experiment with concepts, and engage in problem-solving, all while receiving immediate feedback.

Advantages of Using Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources
  • Engagement: Virtual simulations captivate students' attention by providing hands-on experiences and promoting active learning.
  • Critical Thinking: Interactive resources encourage students to think critically and make informed decisions in a risk-free environment.
  • Application of Concepts: Students can apply theoretical knowledge to practical situations, enhancing their understanding and retention of subject matter.
  • Accessibility: These tools allow students to access learning experiences anytime and anywhere, fostering flexibility and inclusivity.
  • Feedback: Instant feedback helps students identify strengths and areas for improvement, promoting self-directed learning.
How to Integrate Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources
  • Select the Right Tool: Choose tools that align with your learning objectives and the content you're teaching. Consider the level of interactivity, complexity, and compatibility with your learning management system.
  • Contextualize: Introduce the simulation by providing context and explaining its relevance to the curriculum. Set clear expectations for what students will learn and accomplish.
  • Guided Exploration: Scaffold the learning experience by guiding students through the simulation's features and functionalities. Provide step-by-step instructions if necessary.
  • Reflective Activities: After the simulation, facilitate discussions or reflective activities that encourage students to analyze their experiences, outcomes, and relevance to real-life scenarios.
  • Assessment: Incorporate assessments that measure students' understanding of both the content and the simulation's application. Consider quizzes, reflective essays, or group discussions.
Examples of Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources

School of Law: Virtual Mock Trial Simulation

In the School of Law, students can engage in a virtual mock trial simulation. This interactive experience allows aspiring lawyers to participate in a simulated courtroom setting. Students take on roles as attorneys, witnesses, judges, and jurors, presenting arguments, cross-examining witnesses, and experiencing the dynamics of a trial. Through this simulation, students develop crucial courtroom skills, enhance their understanding of legal procedures, and gain valuable experience in a risk-free environment.

School of Pharmacy: Pharmacology Virtual Lab

In the School of Pharmacy, students can access a pharmacology virtual lab that simulates real-world drug interactions and reactions. Through the virtual lab, students can experiment with different medications, dosages, and patient scenarios. They can observe the effects of drugs on virtual patients and analyze the potential risks and benefits of different treatment options. This simulation enhances students' understanding of pharmacological concepts and prepares them for clinical practice.

School of Nursing: Patient Care Simulation

In the School of Nursing, students can participate in patient care simulations through virtual scenarios. These simulations allow nursing students to interact with virtual patients, assess their conditions, make clinical decisions, administer medications, and provide appropriate care. By engaging in realistic patient scenarios, students develop critical thinking skills, clinical judgment, and effective communication with patients and healthcare teams.

School of Medicine: Diagnostic Medical Imaging Simulation

In the School of Medicine, students can explore a diagnostic medical imaging simulation. This virtual experience allows medical students to interpret medical images such as X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans. Students can practice identifying abnormalities, making diagnoses, and recommending appropriate treatments based on imaging findings. This simulation enhances students' radiology skills and prepares them for interpreting medical images in real clinical settings.

School of Dentistry: Virtual Dental Procedures

In the School of Dentistry, students can engage in virtual dental procedure simulations. Through these simulations, dental students can practice various dental procedures, such as cavity fillings, extractions, and root canals, in a virtual environment. Students can manipulate virtual dental tools, interact with virtual patients, and receive feedback on their technique. This simulation enhances students' hands-on skills and prepares them for real clinical practice.

School of Social Work: Client Assessment and Intervention Simulation

In the School of Social Work, students can participate in a client assessment and intervention simulation. This virtual experience allows social work students to interact with virtual clients, assess their needs, and develop intervention plans. Students can practice communication skills, active listening, and empathy as they address virtual clients' challenges and provide support. This simulation prepares students for real-world social work scenarios.

Graduate School: Research Data Analysis Simulation

In the Graduate School, students from various disciplines can benefit from a research data analysis simulation. This virtual simulation provides students with a dataset related to their field of study. Students can practice data cleaning, analysis, and interpretation using virtual data analysis tools. Through this simulation, students enhance their research skills, gain experience in handling real-world datasets, and prepare for their academic and professional research endeavors.

Getting Started

If you're new to using virtual simulations and interactive learning resources, don't worry! The Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning in collaboration with the Health Sciences and Human Services Library and the Thurgood Marshall Law Library offers exposure to Virtual Reality Headsets in two ways:

  1. Explore the HTC Vive Virtual Reality Headset in the HSHSL Innovation Space
  2. Bring Meta Quest 2 Virtual Reality Headsets into your classroom or online learning environment through the interlibrary technology loan program—details currently under development. Please contact if interested. If you would like this experimentation to coincide with educational research in the scholarship of teaching and learning, please contact Eric Belt, EdD,  

Embrace the power of technology and transform your classroom into an engaging and dynamic learning environment. Explore the endless possibilities of virtual simulations and interactive learning resources today!

Virtual Reality (VR)

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Virtual Simulations and Interactive Learning Resources by Open AI is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Pedagogical Evaluation of Apps and Tools 
Ensure the pedagogical effectiveness of apps and tools by using resources for evaluation. Learn about frameworks and criteria for evaluating educational technology, considering factors such as learning objectives, engagement, accessibility, and data privacy. By evaluating apps and tools before implementation, you can make informed decisions and choose the most suitable resources to enhance your teaching and meet your student's needs.

Why Evaluate Pedagogical Value?

Integrating apps and tools into your teaching can be transformative, but their success relies on their ability to enhance learning outcomes. Evaluating their pedagogical value allows you to:

  • Align with Learning Objectives: Determine if an app or tool supports your course's learning objectives and outcomes, enhancing the overall educational experience.
  • Enhance Engagement: Identify apps and tools that encourage active participation, collaboration, and critical thinking among students.
  • Personalize Learning: Choose tools that accommodate diverse learning styles and offer opportunities for individualized instruction.
  • Assess Impact: Measure the app's effectiveness in improving student performance, engagement, and satisfaction.
Steps for Pedagogical Evaluation
  1. Define Educational Goals: Start by clearly defining your course objectives and desired learning outcomes. Identify areas where technology could enhance these goals.
  2. Research and Selection: Explore available apps and tools that align with your objectives. Consider their features, functionalities, and potential benefits.
  3. Alignment with Pedagogy: Examine how the app aligns with your teaching methods. Does it support active learning, critical thinking, or collaborative activities?
  4. Student-Centeredness: Evaluate whether the app engages students and empowers their learning process. Does it encourage interactivity and participation?
  5. Accessibility and Inclusivity: Ensure the app is accessible to all students, including those with disabilities. Evaluate its compatibility with assistive technologies.
  6. Ease of Use: Consider the app's user interface and intuitiveness. A tool that is easy to navigate and requires minimal technical knowledge is more likely to be effective.
  7. Data Privacy and Security: Verify that the app complies with data privacy regulations and institution policies. Student data must be protected.
  8. Educational Support: Check if the app offers adequate support resources, tutorials, and troubleshooting assistance for both educators and students.
  9. Assessment and Feedback: Assess if the app provides tools for formative and summative assessment. Can you track student progress and provide timely feedback?
Testing and Implementation
  • Pilot Testing: Before full implementation, run a pilot test with a small group of students. Collect feedback on usability, engagement, and overall effectiveness.
  • Continuous Improvement: Regularly assess how well the app aligns with your pedagogical goals. Gather feedback from students and make necessary adjustments.
  • Collaboration: Collaborate with colleagues and attend workshops to learn from their experiences with similar apps and tools.
  • Student Feedback: Involve students in the evaluation process. Their insights can help identify what works best for their learning needs.

Evaluating the pedagogical value of apps and tools ensures that your teaching methods remain effective, innovative, and student-centered. By following these steps, you can confidently integrate technology into your teaching, enhancing the overall learning experience and promoting student success. Remember that ongoing evaluation and adaptation are key to harnessing the full potential of educational apps and tools.

Additional Resources

Belt, E. S. (2014, April 9). QUOTA Scorecard [Blog post]. Eric Belt, Ed.D., Artifacts.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology & The Indian Institute of Management (n.d.). A framework for evaluating appropriateness of educational technology use in global development programs [Report]. Comprehensive Initiative on Technology Evaluation. 

Harris, M. (2018, November 9). Educational technology standards and frameworks [Blog post]. The International EdTech Blog with Matt Harris, Ed.D.


Creative Commons License
Pedagogical Evaluation of Apps and Tools by Open AI is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.