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Scanning pens for exams and in the classroom

By May 7, 2018No Comments

As we approach the exam season, SEN/ALN coordinators across the land are going to be getting things in place ready to support those learners with additional needs for the upcoming exams. One thing they often have to sort out are Teaching  TLAs to help those learners who struggle with their reading. When I was judging the BETT Awards for 2018, one of the products I had to judge in one of my categories was Scanning Pens.


One of my guiding principles about good edtech is that edtech which solves a problem or does a particular job really well. Some apps or tools fail because sometimes they try to do too much with the particular tool and don’t focus on its core purpose. C-Pens fall into the category of doing a job well and it doesn’t try to do more than it needs to. It provides its solution, does it well and is simple to use.

I got to play with two of the C-Pen readers that they have; firstly the C-Pen reader which is the fully featured reader which can be used during lessons and has a host of helpful features and secondly, the exam reader, which due to its use in exam situations, has fewer features than its counterpart.

What can a C-Pen do and how does it work?

The C-Pen works by running the tip of the pen along your words and then it can perform a number of different functions, such as giving definitions, reading the text to you, sharing it to another computer and more.

  • Hear words & lines of text read aloud
  • A Collins 10th Edition Dictionary
  • An Oxford Spanish and French Dictionary
  • Scan, store & transfer to a PC or Mac (1GB of storage & downloads to a computer like using a USB key – no software required)
  • Scan direct to the cursor on a computer
  • A voice recorder

The size of the pen is as you would expect a pen to be. It is simple, easy to use and they claim it inspires independent reading. I can confirm this as when I showed the pen to my son he loved it. Later that day, when putting my son to bed, I found him awake in bed almost an hour later. Why was he still awake? Because he was still reading (listening via the C-Pen) his book in bed!

So what?

Well, if you’re looking for a relatively cheap solution to support learners in exam or classroom situations with a device which can help them with their reading of paper based text, this is something you might want to consider.

For more information please visit:

I hope you find them of interest!

This is NOT a sponsored post.


Mark Anderson

Mark Anderson, @ICTEvangelist. Click here to learn more.

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