Another student app. I wasn't expecting to release this one until September but the questions were already done, so I changed my mind. I also wanted to see how long it would take me to make native apps for both iOS and Android using my prototype App Factory.
This is a different kind of beast to previous apps and comprises of a collection of quizzes - a Quizbank. The package is intended as a revision aid for clinical pharmacy undergraduates in the third year of our MPharm degree. Many thanks to Stephanie Shale, a recent graduate who authored the bank of questions. Once again, the overall intention is to exploit the existing knowledge of a student to produce a learning aid that will benefit other students.
The App Creation Process
It had taken Steph quite a few hours to devise the questions in an MCQ type format. In total there are about 130 questions spread across 9 quizzes. The quizzes had been entered into our VLE and available in an xml format. So basically I started off with 9 xml files, and started the timer:
As it turned out, the app creation process was fairly quick. It took me about an hour and a half to create the apps for iOS and Android, and comprised the following steps:
- Drag-and-dropping the xml files to the prototype 'App-Factory' web-site
- Choosing a colour scheme for the app
- Selecting a background image and icon from stock photos, adjusting these to suit the colour scheme
- Clicking on the 'Make App' button on the App-Factory to create the source files
- Copying the source files to my Mac and compiling for iOS and Android to produce the native apps
- Uploading these to the distribution site for the university
In the future, I am hoping to make the process even quicker by automatically provisioning the apps to the distribution site, following the click on the 'Make App' button. This will eliminate steps 5 and 6. However, this is a work in progress and not likely to finished for a few more months. But when it is, the App-Factory will be unleashed on staff and students to see what happens! I'm looking forward to that.