Lite up your life


FCE Academy is great value, with 1,000 FCE-style questions for less than the price of a textbook. But we know some people like to try before they buy. So we came up with what we think is a great idea: FCE Academy Lite - a sample of our Use of English questions for absolutely nothing. Zilch. Big fat zero.

If a student wants to upgrade, they can (and if their teacher is in our Partner Programme they will probably get a nice discount, and we share the proceeds with the teacher). If not, at least they will have benefited from a few of our tests.

Interested? Head over to Google Play or iTunes to download. And don't forget to leave a review :-)

The story of an app part 13: Testing update

Our testing team - 22 teachers from around the world - have begun to feed back. Their thoughts so far have been overwhelmingly positive.

I loved how it was so easy to use - I think the students would love it.
— KB

(Don't forget these are not our friends and relations - these are ELT teachers we have met on Facebook and Twitter - so it's lovely to get good feedback from them.)

We're getting loads of great ideas for amendments to the basic app, and we're also getting a few bugs, of which we think Kate's impressive score for Part 4 is in the lead for most puzzling. Surely even teachers aren't that good?

Everything needs fixing before release, so we're working very hard at the moment.

The story of an app part 12: Testing times


Bang on schedule, we've given the FCE Academy app its first internal sign-off and sent it out to some real-life users -- ELT teachers from around the world -- to see what they think.

If you follow us on Twitter and Facebook (come on, why wouldn't you?), you'll have noticed us organising a big recruitment drive for teachers. Friends and family are OK, but we needed our app tested by real teachers out there teaching real students. We were delighted with the response -- we have people in Spain, Ireland, England, Israel, Pakistan and Brazil -- a wonderful mix and, most importantly, we've been impressed by their expertise and attention to detail since testing started.

Already, we have logged some minor bugs but nothing has come up (yet!) to cause us sleepless nights. Let's hope everyone's this smiley when development is complete and the app is live (June 14th) ...


P.S. If you'd like a preview, sign up here. We may have another round of testing later in the month.

The story of an app part 11: What's in a name?

And there's a logo to go with the name...

And there's a logo to go with the name...

Well, it's taken us a while, but we're finally brave enough to share our new app's name with you... [drumroll...] ... FCE Academy!

Our teacher community (well, most of it) likes the name, and we think it sounds suitably serious (well, we are going to have more practice tests than any other resource) as well as suitably app-like.

We hope you like it :-)

The story of an app part 5: Specification

Imagine a 30-page document describing in detail every feature of an FCE test app.

What happens when you click every button? What happens when you get an answer correct or incorrect? What can a user see on every screen? How big should the text be?

Now imagine you have to write that document so that it can be interpreted without confusion ...

It's detailed work, but it's very important to get our ideas down before we begin talking to our developer.

And then, of course, every one of those 30 pages will need to be discussed and probably changed ...