Noodle – The 32 Most Innovative Online Educational Tools to Use in 2015

Want to be a better student? There are literally thousands of apps for that. Not to mention a wide array of other online learning tools.

They’re not all changing education — but a few innovative ones are. Among the wide-ranging apps, sites, learning management systems, flashcard creators, and content archives, there are a few dozen that promise to make an impact on how students learn this year.

Noodle’s team of education experts investigated the vast array of online learning tools to create this list of the 32 best, most innovative online tools that we think will change the education space in 2015.

We spoke with teachers, tutors, and leaders in the space. We sifted through reviews, awards, and profiles. As we evaluated the available resources to bring you the best, we maintained a strict set of criteria. The selections had to be: designed for high school or college students, user-friendly, in a strong design language, easy to use, and available for free. Among many other factors, each also had to have a solid base of users, a reputation for excellence, and big plans for 2015.

We have grouped these 32 selections based on how they are making a difference in student education. Our categories are: classroom connectors, interactive information providers, language learning tools, online courses, presentation makers, productivity boosters, and reading enhancers. We did not rank the 32 best because we believe that they are all excellent in distinct ways. What they share in common is the capacity to change your education.

Without further ado, here are the tools that you’ll want to have on your computer, tablet, or smartphone this year…

Presentation Makers


What it is: StudyBlue is a popular online studying platform. It boasts a gigantic library of user-created flashcards and study guides.

Who would love it: Middle school and high school students.

Why it’s good: The site’s nearly seven million users store and share class materials, flashcards, and practice quizzes. The free version of StudyBlue gives you access to suggested flashcards within particular interest sets, whereas the paid version gives you access to all of the decks in the library (more than 275 million of them).

Why it’s relevant: Becky Splitt, the company’s CEO, said she hopes the site will also appeal to learners who are no longer in the classroom, explaining that she wants it to be “a destination for anyone who wants to learn anything, regardless of whether you have a final to study for.”