onecourse for schools is an app designed for the school environment. The onecourse app is separated into literacy and numeracy strands, divided into levels. Each option is made up of hundreds of activities, games and stories.
The numeracy option is curriculum based. It includes two levels, one for 3-5 year olds, and the second contains 18 topics suitable for 4-6 year olds. These are aligned with the aims of the Early Years Foundation Stage and the National Curriculum in England.
Teaching Assistants (TAs) support the delivery of the intervention. TAs do not take a pedagogical role; they support pupils with logging into and using the app, and ensure that the pupils remain focused on the task. Pupils work through the apps for 30 minutes each day, in addition to normal maths teaching.
Pupils can work through the learning units within each lesson at their own pace, picking up from where they left off. Progress can be monitored in real-time with the teacher's administrative tool, allowing them to provide instant feedback and support to each pupil.
Pupils can log-in on any device. The intervention works on tablets and smartphones, both iOS and Android.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) tested the impact of the app on pupils in Year 1 who had been identified by their teachers as being in the bottom half of the class in mathematics. The study found the app had a positive impact on primary maths outcomes.
In this project, TAs received a day of training, an implementation manual, and ongoing support from the University of Nottingham. This training is not currently available to schools outside of the research project.
The study also found that pupils eligible for free school meals made less progress if they used onecourse. These results have a lower security rating than the overall findings because of the smaller number of pupils involved.
The evaluation found a mean effect size of +0.24 for primary maths.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) carried out this trial in 113 schools from the East Midlands, West Midlands, Greater Manchester and North West, and South and West Yorkshire. The EEF are considering funding an effectiveness trial which will aim to investigate the impact on FSM-eligible pupils with a larger sample size and higher security.