Brainscape is a cloud based adaptive flashcards platform. The confidence-based repetition (CBR) algorithm supports learning by repeating flashcards in the right pattern for each learner, based in intelligent personalization and cognitive science research. The tool is designed for learners who must ingest a lot of knowledge into their brain over time, specifically naming its success with preparation for high-stakes exams like the Bar Exam or MCAT. Concepts in the platform are organized by classes and decks by subject, which allows instructors to build their own classes and add various pre-designed decks for students to study. In addition to the thousands of subjects to choose from, instructors, TAs, and students can create their own flashcards as well. Brainscape allows users to organize their flashcards, add images and sounds, and collaborate with multiple editors in real-time. Check out additional teaching strategies listed below.  

Link to Brainscape Webpage  

Teaching Strategies

Explore the following teaching strategies for low-stakes assessment:  

  • Individual flashcard creation: have students make flashcards for the 5 hardest questions they have from this week’s chapter, in your shared class deck. 
  • Collaborative flashcard creation: Work in pairs to make unit flashcards. Assign one deck/chapter per student pair. 
  • One-Time Study Assignment: Study at least 30 flashcards in Brainscape’s Knowledge Genome leading up to a weekly quiz/exam. 
  • Ongoing Study Assignment: Have students’ study 10 minutes every day.  
  • TA Created flashcards: Have students review flashcards created by the TA’s, perhaps for labs too! 
  • Bookmarking: Have students review a specific deck, and bookmark the cards they have questions about, to discuss in class tomorrow. 


  • Set up a course page for students to access from any web or mobile device  
  • Instructors can build their own flashcards, borrow flashcards created from other educators, or have students create their own flashcards 
  • Manage students editing permissions, including advanced editing features 
  • Add images and sounds to flashcards  
  • Assign studying flashcards or creating flashcards as a low-stakes assignment  
  • Analyze students’ study habits and identify areas for improvement  


2 Star –


Brainscape ranks 2/5 stars for accessibility. To learn more about the accessibility review, contact

  • Partially Supports Speech to Text (STT) such as DragonSpeaks or Voice Dictation 
  • Supports Alternative Input Experience/Keyboard Navigation 
  • Partially Supports Screen Magnification and Color Contrast 

Getting Started with Brainscape: Key Tips  

Learn more about Spaced Repetition 

This technology is not included with the University of Denver. Faculty, staff, and students may need to purchase a subscription. The technology may offer educational pricing with an “.edu” email address. Free trials or free accounts may also be available through the technology website. 

Tech Support

The University of Denver does not directly provide technical support. The Office of Teaching and Learning may consult on pedagogy. 


Cohen, A. S., (2010). Brainscape’s “Confidence-Based Repetition” Methodology.   

Waterman, S. (2013). The effects of Brainscape’s confidence-based Repetition on two adults’ performance on knowledge-based quizzes.  

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OTL Technology Rating
GREEN technologies are appropriate for teaching at DU. The tool does not pose a risk to student privacy or FERPA regulations..