Name: OutlinesOutloud

What is it? This app converts study outlines to spoken audio. Flexible playback controls let you vary speech rate; jump forward and backward, skip rows or whole sections, loop—and more.

Best for: High school and college students.

Price: $4.99

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Rated: 4+


  • Create an outline on your Mac or PC, using an outlining program that saves in OPML.
  • Save the finished outline into your Dropbox folder. Using Dropbox means new outlines and subsequent edits sync instantly to your iPhone.
  • Launch OutlinesOutloud on your iPhone. New files from your Dropbox folder will sync automatically.
  • Set any outline-specific preferences. In the Settings pane, select the speech rate, text colors for display, and whether you’d like to hear prefixes before all, some, or none of the rows.
  • Select the outline you’d like to listen to. Green vs. gray icons make it easy to see which outlines you’ve listened to and which are new.
  • Press PLAY. During playback, you can jump backward and forward, loop sections, display or hide text from any row, and scroll to any part of the outline. Pressing the auto-locator will return you to the row that’s currently speaking.


About the Author:

Meris Stansbury

Meris Stansbury is the Editorial Director for both eSchool News and eCampus News, and was formerly the Managing Editor of eCampus News. Before working at eSchool Media, Meris worked as an assistant editor for The World and I, an online curriculum publication. She graduated from Kenyon College in 2006 with a BA in English, and enjoys spending way too much time either reading or cooking.