The Best Free Education Apps and Resources for Assessing Students

This is a list of some of the best free educational apps and resources for teachers to use to assess their students. In this post, you will learn how to use ZipGrade, SmartGrade, Plickers, and ClassMarker. These programs assist in accessing your students' learning quickly and efficiently.

The ability to quickly grade multiple choice assessments could be one of the best time-saving teacher tricks. Recently, grading apps have become available which can take the place of a traditional scantron machine. No more fighting over who gets to use it first to grade those long final exams! In this post, I provide a brief review and tutorial of the SmartGrade and ZipGrade apps. Both are currently available for free, so snag them while you can!


SmartGrade is an app that allows you to grade multiple choice assessments using your phone's camera. This app is completely free - no maximum scans, and the user interface is attractive and the app is easy to use.


ZipGrade is another multiple choice grading app. The free version limits you to 100 downloads a month, but depending on how you use it, it may be sufficient for your purposes. ZipGrade scans assessments quickly and consistently. Check out the tutorial below for more information.


Classmarker is an online program that allows teachers to create and assign graded assessments. Additionally, the program grades the assessments for the instructor. I love this program because it has saved me hours worth of grading assignments and has drastically reduced the amount of paper I use in my classroom.

I use ClassMarker for weekly homework assignments and use the scheduling function to set the availability of the assessment. My students know that the homework must be submitted on Fridays at 8 AM. This established deadline has drastically reduced the amount of late or missing work.


Plickers takes the concept of classroom clickers, where all students are able to individually answer questions that are addressed to the class as a whole, and provides the instructor with immediate feedback. However, instead of purchasing an expensive classroom set of clickers, each student simply needs their own QR code which can be printed off from the Plickers website. The only other resources that you need to have are a smart phone for the instructor to use to scan the codes (think panning across the room with your camera on, not scanning each code individually), and a computer screen that can be projected for all students to be able to see the questions being asked. Immediately after asking a question and scanning the unique QR codes, the instructor receives feedback about the class as a whole as well as each individual student without the students being able to see each others answers or scores.

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