What is MyStudyBar?


New version released: Go to the Call Centre at the University of Edinburgh to get the latest version of 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 (link here to tutorial) and how to get the best from the MyStudyBar and all its components.

If you’ve downloaded MyStudyBar but you’re not sure how to extract and copy the files to your USB drive you can view the extracting installation tutorials by selecting this link.

Introduction to MyStudyBar

Planning Support
XMind and mind mapping tutorial

Reading Support
T-Bar and screen masking tutorial

ssOverlay colour filter

Orato text reader
Orato text reading ‘in application’

Writing Support
Lingoes and dictionary tutorial
Balabolka Part 1: overview
Balabolka Part 2: text-to-speech and Save as MP3
Balabolka Part 3: importing a dictionary and spelling support

LetMeType Fix

Fix for LetMeType: Thanks to Kevin Hickey for this short tutorial which explains how to fix the spaces between words when using LetMeType in Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010.

Download the tutorial in Word Format.

Download the tutorial in PDF format.


Download MyStudyBar

Download MyStudyBar for Windows XP

Download MyStudyBar for Windows Vista/Win 7

XMind and mind mapping tutorial in Word format
HottNotes tutorial in Word format
Sunbird Calendar in Word format

T-Bar screen masking tutorial in Word format
RapidSet tutorial in Word format
Vu-Bar tutorial in Word format

ssOverlay colour filter tutorial in Word format

Lingoes and dictionary tutorial in Word format
LetMeType and word prediction tutorial
LetMeType tutorial in Word format

Balabolka tutorial in Word format
Stamina touch typing tutorial in Word format

Vision Support
Virtual Magnifier tutorial in Word format
Sonar mouse tracking tutorial in Word format