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The easy way to memorise all you need to ace your GCSEs

Welcome to Oxford Revise, a groundbreaking new app for students that combines gamification with learning science to make it easy for you to memorise all you need to ace your GCSEs. Indeed, Oxford Revise was inspired by leading mobile games and language learning apps like Angry Birds and DuoLingo. Here’s how it works …


We start by using gamification techniques to help you master knowledge and put it into short term memory. Take the exit quiz for each module and you will receive from one to three stars depending on your quiz score, just as if you were playing a game like Angry Birds or Candy Crush. Get one star just for taking the quiz, two stars for scoring 50% or more and three stars for mastering the knowledge and scoring 80% or more. If you really want to demonstrate your mastery of the unit knowledge, score 100% to receive a large and satisfying center star too!

Mastering the knowledge and collecting three stars will cause three things to happen. First you will receive your mastery crown for the unit, second you will reveal the memory strength bar for that unit and third you will unlock access to the next unit. Your total star and crown counts for the course and whole app will increase too as you tackle and master each unit.

These engaging gamification techniques will help motivate you to repeat the quiz until you have mastered the knowledge and put it into short term memory.

Learning Science

Mastering knowledge and putting it into short term memory is, however, only half the battle. If you don’t refresh that knowledge from time to time that knowledge will fade from memory and you won’t be able to retrieve it when you need to. We want to help you push that knowledge into long term memory too.

You will naturally refresh some knowledge when you build later knowledge on top of it. However, over the course of your two GCSE school years, there is much that you will learn that you won’t naturally refresh. If you learn how to solve a simultaneous equation in October, and don’t refresh that knowledge, by January you’ll have forgotten the technique.

Ideally you would refresh new knowledge regularly, but you can’t keep on refreshing all the knowledge you have mastered all the time! The age-old way to deal with this problem is to simply allow yourself to forget this knowledge until shortly before your exams. You then try to rapidly relearn it all over again through intense revision. This way is hard and often fails such that you can’t retrieve knowledge when you need to (usually in the middle of a test).

Fortunately there is a new and much easier way to deal with this enduring problem. By applying a little learning science in a modern app we can optimally pick when to refresh knowledge so that you need to refresh knowledge much less often overall and are able to successfully push knowledge into long term memory for instant retrieval.

The forgetting curve

From 1880 to 1885, Hermann Ebbinghaus first observed through personal experiments on memory what is now known as the forgetting curve. The forgetting curve has two important characteristics.

The first characteristic of the forgetting curve is that after you learn some knowledge the probability of you being able to recall that knowledge roughly halves at a regular time interval. For example, after one day, perhaps the probability of you recalling the knowledge point is 50%, after two days the probability may be 25%, after three days it may be 12.5% and so on. In this example the “half-life” is one day.

The second characteristic is that if you refresh some knowledge at optimal time intervals, the half-life will increase each time you refresh it. In other words, each time you refresh the knowledge it will stay in your memory longer. Indeed, if you refresh that knowledge five to seven times at optimal time intervals, that knowledge will essentially stay in your long term memory forever. Importantly, the optimal time interval before you should refresh the knowledge also increases each time you refresh the knowledge. This is important because it means you need to refresh the knowledge less often as time goes on.

Memory Strength Bars

The actual optimal intervals to refresh knowledge depends on many different factors, but the good news is that you don’t need to worry about this, the Oxford Revise app deals with all this for you. The app shows you a memory strength bar to give you a visual guide as to when you should refresh your memory for each unit.

The memory strength bars are designed such that they slowly decrease in length over time. They represent an estimate of how strong we believe your memory is for a unit. When our estimate of your memory strength reaches 50%, the bar will turn yellow and this is the optimal time for you to retake the quiz and refresh your memory. If you retake the quiz and score well (above 80%) the memory strength bar will be refilled and will now decrease at a slower rate than before. If you retake the quiz and score less well (below 80%) the memory strength bar will only be partially refilled and will decrease at the same speed or faster than before. In this way we personalise the learning experience to you.

Putting it all together

By combining gamification with learning science, the Oxford Revise app, powered by the Quizalize Learner personalised learning engine, helps you first put knowledge into short term memory and second push that knowledge into long term memory. Over the course of two years you should find that you master and retain far more of the knowledge you study and that you perform better in internal school tests, mock exams and official national exams (when they return).

Oxford Revise really is the easy way to memorise all you need to ace your GCSEs!


The Oxford Revise App is brought to you in a partnership between Oxford University Press and Zzish Ltd.

It is powered by the Quizalize engine.