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Quizlet policy changes compel students to reconsider study habits

Stanchie prepares for her upcoming chemistry test by creating her own customized Quizlet. While she was inspired to use Quizlet because of a fellow classmate, Stanchie decided to stick with it after seeing its effect on her own grades.

photo by Brooke Stanchie


Users of Quizlet, a popular study tool, now have limited studying options after the company removed certain functions in an attempt to drive customers to their Plus subscription. To unlock previously free options, students were prompted to pay a yearly fee of $35.99 or $7.99 a month.

Prior to this school year, Quizlet featured four study options with unlimited access: Flashcards, Learn, Match and Tests. Now, free users can review five rounds of the Learn, which may not include all the terms in a set, and one practice test. Although Flashcards and Match are offered without limitation, students dependent upon the Learn and Test options find themselves in a dilemma.

“I guess it’s great for the company, but, for students, I think that it’s a bit unfair,” junior Juli Santander said. “Before, we could really get everything [in the set] mastered. You could really learn everything. And now, I guess it will just be harder…and I know that a lot of students don’t really have the money to pay for Plus.”

The Learn option consists of multiple-choice and written questions. If a question is missed, Quizlet repeats the question to ensure that the student has completely learned the term. Because this comprehensive method was limited, some students were disappointed.

“I don't think I will use Quizlet as much because they have restricted the most effective study techniques,” freshman McKenna Weld said. “Without Learn and Tests, all we're left with is Flashcards and Match, which isn't half as engaging as the other options.”

Because Flashcards and Match were unchanged, some students weren’t affected.

“I think it’s completely fair to students,” sophomore Kris Houston said. “They’re not taking away the fundamental aspect of Quizlet, which is the flashcards…I hate subscription services, but they just have to make money.”

Quizlet does offer another way to access Learn and Tests, but it applies only to students using teacher-made sets. Teachers can compile their sets into classes and invite students to join the class. Then, students can use any of the study methods as frequently as needed.

For Mrs. Anna Johnson, Quizlet’s changes have improved the way she teaches. Before the change, Mrs. Johnson sent the set link to her students. Now, students are enrolled in the class, which allows them access to the class Quizlets all year.

“It makes it so much easier to track their effort and success this way,” Mrs. Johnson said. “I already have Quizlet Plus and love it. It is definitely something teachers need in their teacher toolbox.”

Quizlet is one of many strategies for studying. With these policy changes, students recognize the importance of reexamining their habits and finding other ways to be successful in class.

“I feel well-prepared when I study with Quizlet, but I don't believe that Quizlet is the ‘god’ of all study resources,” junior Kate Stanchie said. “It is the study habits that you have in place that will help you achieve academic success. You have to find what works for you.”


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