Educational software

Under learning software is any kind of computer software that has been specifically designed and programmed for learning purposes. Typical forms are tutorials (training software, such as chess learning software ), exercise programs (eg Vocabulary Trainer) and programs for general information exchange ( eg, digital reference material).

Educational software has a clearly defined learning content follows a certain didactic concept and is aimed at a more or less clearly defined target audience. Unlike the much broader terms educational software and educational software educational software so that the term refers to a family of software products, which is justified not only by their use, but also by common characteristics.

The use of educational software is referred to as e-learning. The transition from the educational software for digital learning game is fluid.


The use of educational software is first detected in the early 1940s, when scientists who conducted research for the American forces, analog computer used to develop flight simulation programs. The most successful of these was developed under G. W. A. Dummer and 1943 completed radar trainers type 19, could be trained at the military pilots for combat missions. The first fully functional flight simulator set in 1948 before the American aircraft manufacturer Curtiss- Wright.

As the first general computer-aided learning system applies the around 1960, developed at the University of Illinois and built computer system PLATO (Programmed Logic for Automated Teaching Operations ), the students of the University, but also supplied users at local schools and other universities with courses. 1963 developed IBM and the Institute for Mathematical Studies in the Social Science ( IMSSS ) Stanford University under the direction of Patrick Suppes, a computer-based learning program that contained a complete primary school curriculum, were taught with the student in California and Mississippi for the first time. In order to market the products that emerged in this partnership to American schools, in 1967 the Computer Curriculum Corporation ( CCC, now Pearson Education Technologies ) was founded. Another pioneer in the development of educational software was the think tank Mitre Corporation, 1969 her interactive cable television system TICCIT (Time -shared, Interactive, Computer - controlled Information Television) was launched, which, inter alia, supplied a number of American universities with foreign language courses.

Until the mid-1970s, educational software was always fixed to the hardware on which it ran, so they hardly stood for users who have not had access to mainframe computers available. This changed dramatically with the spread of personal computers that came into the United States from 1975 to the market. In a short time also arose software companies, some of which specialized in educational software, such as Brøderbund and The Learning Company (both founded in 1980 ), but also the 1973 resulting non- commercial software developers MECC (Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium).

The conditions for the spread of educational software continued to improve, as came in the 1990s computer with sound and sophisticated graphics on the market and the data transfer via CD -ROM and the Internet was possible. Advances in speech recognition technology have benefited among others, the Foreign-language learning software.

Educational software in German-speaking

Manufacturer and Awards

German manufacturer of educational software are, inter alia, the company was founded in Munich 1994 Digital publishing, as well as traditional book publishers such as Ernst Klett Verlag, Langenscheidt, Cornelsen Verlag, Friedrich Verlag, Mildenberger Verlag Europe and teaching aids. Numerous topics of electrical engineering can be developed using simple and varied learning programs. Since 1995, the multimedia section of the BFE Oldenburg developed educational software to topics in electrical engineering. In Austria educational software is marketed inter alia by Veritas Publishing and David Wohlhart.

The Klaus Tschira Foundation Founded in 1995, gives an annual youth Software Price to students who have developed an excellent educational software or scientific presentation in digital form. At the Frankfurt Book Fair of Children's Software Price TOMMI is awarded every year since 2002, both games and learning programs can be awarded the.

Types of educational software (selection)

Language learning software

Digital courses are one of the oldest types of educational software. As well as audio -based language courses they offer over the conventional language teaching in the classroom has the advantage that the learner determines the pace of work itself. The didactic instruments sufficient in this medium of learning today from the training vocabulary and grammar quiz on the listening comprehension through to pronunciation training. The manufacturers - these are for the German market in particular digital publishing, Auralog / Hueber, Koch Media, Lesson Nine ( Babbel ), Perseus ( Klett Group), Sprachenlernen24, Strokes and unison Media / Euro Talk - however, this represented a whole range of different didactic concepts. Since 2010 also urges the U.S. producer Rosetta Stone on the German market.

Learning software for electrical engineering

Numerous topics of electrical engineering can be developed using simple and varied learning programs. Among other things, the BFE Oldenburg offers an extensive tutorial series, both basic topics ( Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering 1-4, AC technology, ac engineering, measurement and control engineering, electronics, etc. ), as well as specific topics, such as EIB / KNX covering i- or lighting equipment.

All training content is taught via audio texts in order to avoid reading longer texts on the screen. Mnemonics, key formulas, summaries, and tasks are but displayed as a screen texts. Many animations, videos and interactions in the learning programs are designed to help increase the learning effect. Knowledge searches carried out while the fabric placement and programs respond during a task on each answer of the learner with appropriate feedback.

With the introduction of IT professionals and the demand, especially train these new action-oriented professions, the use of interactive learning programs also urged in this area more and more. So in the late 90s RH- learning software began to develop programs for computers and telecommunications that have been constantly expanded and adapted to the technical level. Meanwhile, the bandwidth ranges over the network technology and the interface to the relational database. All programs have been developed by faculty with years of training experience.

Learning programs for the teaching of German

A small number of digital literacy programs has been directed at children of preschool age, for example, at the 2006 Frankfurt Book Fair with an award -winning software LolliPop and Schlaumäuse Cornelsen, but also products of Terzio - publishing, from, Magnussoft and Tivola Publishing.

For teaching in primary school ( grades 1-4) there after class levels staggered German software Terzio, Magnussoft and the Duden publishing house, as well as individual products of the learning Playing publisher of the Franciscan Book & Software Publishing, of Tivola Publishing ( learning success primary school ) and Avanquest Software. The most comprehensive software packages for the German lessons currently offer Cornelsen and, both of which have, inter alia, staggered products for all grade levels 1-7 in the program, the educational software by Cornelsen - is part of a textbook series - as well as the Duden. The world of learning Alfons Schroedel program extends to the class level 6

Learning software that allows reading and writing can be practiced, is also to be found for on-line use on the internet, mostly on fee-based play and learning portals, but occasionally freely accessible. Also for mobile devices such as tablet computers and iPhone apps are offered for German learning to write.

Tivola Franzis and market some of its products as a version for Nintendo game consoles. Literacy learning software for children is beside small computer as the Leapster or - fixed installation - available on similar products for example by VTech.

Tutorials for teaching mathematics

Individual products for mathematical propaedeutic aimed at preschoolers. However, the largest audience for mathematical learning software are children and young people of school age, these programs - is used not only by students of the primary school, but until the 10th class, sometimes even by students of the secondary school - unlike learning software for the teaching of German.

Many of these products are intended for use in school mathematics classes differentiated by grade levels, such as the series Lollipop by Cornelsen, the world in the number of Schroedel and Velcro math coach; all three are components in larger, multi-media educational works. The only designed for school teaching mathematics learning software that is not included in a textbook series, Alfons learning world of Schroedel. This series is also staggered by grade levels as a third group of math learning software, which is marketed for the school concomitant use.

In addition, there are a variety of class cross-stage single products isolated are also aimed at adult users. Cornelsen and Schroedel additionally offer also special software to test and high school preparation.

On the Internet, online programs are available for calculating practicing in play and learning portals; occasionally they are also set for the free use.

Mathematics learning software for children is offered not only for the computer and the internet, but also for the Nintendo DS, for the Leapster and - permanently installed - on the other commercially available minicomputers.