What is MyStudyBar?


MyStudyBar is a tool which helps overcome problems that students commonly experience with studying, reading and writing. The tool consists of a set of portable open source and freeware applications, assembled into one convenient package. Easy to install, simple to use, handy and effective, MyStudyBar provides comprehensive learning support at the desktop, where it is needed. And if this is not already attractive enough, a further eye-catching feature of MyStudyBar is that it is completely FREE to download and free to use.

Although MyStudyBar is designed to support learners with literacy-related difficulties such as dyslexia, the toolbar can offer potential benefits to all learners. Please note, MyStudyBar is designed to run on a Windows PC. There is no Apple Mac version. For a full list of Apple Mac portable apps visit the FreeSmug Site.

Features of MyStudyBar

MyStudyBar puts a whole range of individual and essential tools at your fingertips. Together, these have been designed to support the complete study cycle from research, planning and structuring to getting across a written or spoken message. MyStudyBar has 6 sections; each has a drop down menu offering personal choice, flexibility and independent learning, particularly for those learners who require additional strategies to support their learning. With over 15 apps to choose from, MyStudyBar is the perfect study aid.

Examples include: Xmind for planning and organization; T-Bar for customising font and colour backgrounds; Lingoes for when you need a talking dictionary; LetMeType for help with text input, and Balabolka for converting text to audio. And if all that’s not enough, there’s even a speech-to-text app which allows you to talk to your computer.

You can use MyStudyBar straight from a USB stick (if, for example, you are using a machine that is not your own) or you can install it directly to the desktop. (Technical staff in colleges or universities also have the choice of installing it on the network for everyone to use).

Sir Jackie Stewart endorses MyStudyBar

Sir Jackie StewartSir Jackie Stewart OBE, 3-times Formula One champion and President of Dyslexia Scotland commented, “MyStudyBar is an excellent software tool that can help overcome barriers associated with dyslexia. It can support the whole study cycle and assist with getting across a spoken or written message. It is completely free of charge to download and to use. MyStudyBar can be a great help to persons with literacy difficulties and is accessible even to those with unsupported, or hidden, dyslexia.”

MyStudyBar step-by-step guides

To get you started with MyStudyBar we have provided some useful help materials. Included among these are screencast tutorials on how to download and how to get the best from the MyStudyBar and all its components.

Introduction to MyStudyBar

Planning Support: XMind and mind mapping tutorial

Reading Support: T-Bar and screen masking tutorial

Writing Support: Balabolka Part 1: overview

Writing Support: Balabolka Part 2: text-to-speech and Save as MP3

Writing Support: Balabolka Part 3: importing a dictionary and spelling support

Download MyStudyBar

New version released: this download button links to Call Scotland at the University of Edinburgh for the latest version of MyStudyBar, where it may be downloaded for free.

Download MyStudyBar


The software applications that comprise MyStudyBar are linked from this website and distributed by CALL Scotland “as is” and any express or implied warranties, including, but not limited to, fitness for a particular purpose are disclaimed. In no event shall CALL Scotland or Soffed Ltd be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special, exemplary, or consequential damages (including, but not limited to, loss of use, data, or profits; or business interruption) however caused and on any theory of liability, whether in contract, strict liability, or tort (including negligence or otherwise) arising in any way out of the use of these applications, even if advised of the possibility of such damage.