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Teaching and Learning Since 2002

The Anki Dojo
暗記 道場

  ↓  Table of Contents - click on the link to go directly to its section

  1. What is Anki?
  2. How to get and manage Anki
  3. AnkiWeb and SyncAnki's Sync icon.
  4. Syncing: upload or download?
  5. How to start using Anki
  6. How to study with Anki
  7. Custom Study (how to study more)
  8.  UPDATED!  Our Anki decks
  9. Combining Anki decks

What is Anki?

Anki is a free flash card software that can be used with home computers, mobile phones, and anything that uses the Internet. It is different from regular flash cards because it uses spaced repetition system (SRS). The following picture shows how SRS works.

Diagram explaining SRS

All cards start at "Deck 1." The better you are with a card, the higher the "deck number" that card will be and the less often you will see that card again. If you are very good with a card you may not see it again for months or years! If you forget a card, you will start over again with that card in "Deck 1" to help you remember it again.

You can do what Anki does with real paper flash cards or other flash card websites such as Quia.com or Quizlet.com. That is much harder because you would need to separate and plan the cards yourself. Anki is a computer program, so it uses basic math to do all the planning for you. For each card you only need to click on a button if you got it wrong, had a hard time with it, did OK with it, or had an easy time with it. Anki will plan the next time you will study that card again.

Frustrated man with many flash cards on his desk
This man needs Anki!

You can have thousands of cards in your Anki file or account! Because of SRS, as long as you practice for 10 minutes everyday (including weekends!) you will see only a few cards each day. Each time you get a card right, you will see it much later on (thanks to Anki's math). If you make a mistake, starting over with that card is good because the Anki does it to help you remember the card so you will not forget it again.

I myself am using Anki to help me remember my Japanese. As of December 15, 2013, I have 460 Anki cards. Today I practiced with only 20 cards! The other 440 cards will be shown to me later - some cards I will not see again for six months or longer because they are too easy for me!

The best part about Anki is that you can use it anywhere! You can use Anki anytime - after school before starting your homework, in the long early morning cab ride to school, or on a Saturday afternoon while waiting to meet your friends at the mall. You will use AnkiWeb.net most of the time and you can use it on your phone or any computer. There is an Android app (free) and an iOS app ($25), and they are both much better than AnkiWeb. Get the app if you can!

If you find Anki to be helpful, you can make your own cards and deck for anything you want to remember. You can make cards to remember math formulas, history vocabulary words, or road signs for your learner's permit test. There are no limits as long as you work for it!

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How to get and manage Anki

Mac and PC

1.) Go to AnkiSRS.net
2.) Click on the "Download" button.
3.) Select the computer you want to use (Mac or Windows). You can keep both in one USB flash drive!

For Macs:

You can move the Anki application from the installer to your USB drive. When you open it from your USB, your work will be saved in a folder named "Anki" in the Documents folder of the computer's hard drive.

When you are done using Anki, remember two things:
1) Copy that folder in Documents to your USB drive. That way, if you need to use a different Mac, you can just copy the folder to the new computer's Documents folder and run Anki from your USB as normal.
2) If you are finished with a laptop at school, make sure to throw the Anki folder from the Documents folder (after you copy it to your USB) into the trash. That way, other Anki users will not use your files by mistake. The reason for that is below.

For PCs:

a) Have the installer put Anki in the top (root) folder of your USB drive (for example if your USB is D:/ then put it there and not inside another folder). It will make a folder named "anki". I suggest you change that folder's name to AnkiPC so it will not conflict with the Mac "Anki" folder (which is used to save your Mac work).
b) Make a new text file and enter this:
start /b \ankipc\anki.exe -b \AnkiPCdata
c) Save the file as anki.bat and put that file in the AnkiPC folder. After that, each time you run Anki on your PC, use anki.bat not anki.exe (the regular program).
A shot of Anki stored in an USB.  The anki.bat file has a green check mark and the anki.exe file has a red cross mark.
The .bat file you made will tell the PC to save all your work in a new folder in your USB named AnkiPCdata.
If my instructions are a bit hard to understand, you can simply download the anki.bat file into your AnkiPC folder.

This screen shot is what you should have in your USB drive (as viewed in a Mac):
Screen shot of my USB drive's folder with the 4 Anki folders

Android

1.) Click on your Android phone or tablet's Play Store.
2.) Search for AnkiDroid. You will see "AnkiDroid Flashcards" by Nicolas Raoul - get that one.
3.) Download and install it into your phone/tablet. It's free and there are no ads!

iPhone/iPad

1.) Go to App Store.
2.) Search for AnkiMobile. You will see "AnkiMobile Flashcards" by Damian Elmes (he also created Anki!). Get that one, but keep in mind that it costs $25. If you want to save your money, you can use AnkiWeb (AnkiWeb.net) for free just to study. The app lets you do much more so if you can get the money get the app too!

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AnkiWeb and Sync Anki's Sync icon.

AnkiWeb is where you can save your decks online. Even better, you can practice there using any web browser. This is a great way to practice if you can't use a computer but you can use a phone or a tablet.

How does AnkiWeb get your decks? You use the Sync button to send them from the computer program or phone/tablet app to AnkiWeb. After you practice on AnkiWeb, you can use the Sync on the Anki program or app again to get your saved work from AnkiWeb to your computer, phone, or tablet. That way you don't need to again study cards on the software that you already studied on AnkiWeb.

Here's how to get started using AnkiWeb:

1.) Go to AnkiWeb.net.
2.) Click on the blue Sign Up button.
3.) Enter your e-mail address and create a password. Make sure the password is easy for you to remember!
4.) Enter your e-mail address and new password again. That is how the website makes sure you don't make a typo.

After all that you can use the e-mail address and password for AnkiWeb and also when you click on Sync.

If you use different things to study Anki (for example, I use my home desktop computer, my phone, and my tablet) try to Sync before you start studying. That will copy your latest work to the Anki software. When you are finished, be sure to Sync again so your newest work will be saved online.

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Syncing: upload or download?

Sometimes if you make a big change to your decks and your collection is different than what is on your AnkiWeb, when you Sync you will see a warning that looks like this:
Warning window explaining a conflict between the Anki collection on the computer and in AnkiWeb, and asking the user to Upload to AnkiWeb, Download from AnkiWeb, or Cancel
If you make the wrong choice, you could lose your new work and keep your old work in both the software and AnkiWeb. So how do you make the right choice?

I think the wording is a little different on AnkiDroid (the Android Anki app). Just in case, Export = Upload and Import = Download.

You will not see that warning message when you use AnkiWeb because you can't Sync using that website anyway. Syncing can only be done on an Anki software.

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How to start using Anki

Screen shot of the opening browser for Anki
Anki for the PC and Mac look almost exactly the same (the same person made both software). You will see three choices on the top:

In AnkiDroid, Add is the (+) button. Browse is the button with 3 horizontal bars.

There are two small pictures in the Mac and PC software (they look the same in AnkiDroid):

*If you are using a school Mac, when you are finished using it be sure to throw away the Anki folder in Documents (after you copy it to your USB) because it saves your password. You don't want someone else to accidentally mess up your deck. PC users' files are all in the USB so they do not need to worry about it.

AnkiWeb has Decks and Add only. There is no Browse, but there is Search so you can find a card you want in a deck. There is no Sync because everything is saved on AnkiWeb anyway. If you want to Browse, see your stats, or add a new deck, you will need to use the computer program or phone/tablet app. For your class with me it will be important for you to keep the Anki computer software in your USB drive so you will be ready when it is time to add more cards to study.

There are other functions that are not important now, but are good for you to know:

You can easily add new decks by double-clicking on an .apkg file. That is how you will add new cards from me.

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How to study with Anki

Screen shot of the opening browser for Anki Screen shot of opening screen with one deck opened to reveal two sub-decks
As you can see in the above screen shot, I have 5 main decks. One deck has a (+) next to it. You can click on the (+) to show sub-decks (decks under the main deck). That way you can choose to study a sub-deck only, or you can click on the main deck to study all of its sub-decks. In the screen shots above you can see that I have a Kana main deck and two sub-decks - Hiragana and Katakana. You can see that I have 3 Kana cards total from 2 Hiragana cards and 1 Katakana card.

*When you Sync, AnkiWeb will copy if a main deck is open or closed. So if you prefer your main deck to be all closed, close them before you Sync so AnkiWeb will show them to be all closed too. This isn't very important, but it isgood to know.

You will see two numbers: green Dues and blue News. Due cards are cards you have already learned. New cards are cards you have not studied before. Pick a deck you want to study by clicking on its name.

Screen shot of the entry screen for an Anki deck with 3 numbers - new, learned, and reviewing
You will see a new menu for your deck. You can go back to your Decks list by clicking on "Decks". You will see 3 numbers: New, Learning, and To Review. New cards are cards you have never seen before. Learning are cards that were New but you did not finish practicing them. To Review are cards you have seen before. Click on Study Now to begin.

Screen shot of an example card of a Japanese sentence with no answer revealed
Now you will see a card. You will also see 3 new buttons.

So for that Japanese sentence in the picture I think it says, "That over there is Japan." I click on Show Answer and the correct answer shows up:
Screen shot of a sample card with a Japanese sentence and the correct answer being shown by Anki.
Oops! I said "is Japan" but the right answer is "was Japan." I was wrong. I need to click on "Again" so I can try again. I will see that card in 10 minutes or less.

*Anki will not work if you are not honest with yourself about your answer. If it was very, very hard for you to remember the answer (or you made a lucky guess), you should click on Again (even if you were right) so you can see it again in a few minutes and not wait one day to see that card again. It is great (really!) if you get an answer wrong and need to click on "Again". It means you are honest with yourself and you know you need to see the card again and again to better remember the correct answer.

Screen shot of a sample card for this class' vocabulary
The next picture is what the answer for a New card looks like. As you can see, it has only 3 buttons.

Screen shot of a sample card for this class' vocabulary and the card had a Good answer from the first viewing
This picture is of the same card (after I thought for 5 seconds and gave the right answer, then clicked on Good). As you can see the time above the buttons are different - Good is now 1 day, not 10 minutes. If I think for 1 second and get the right answer again, I could then click on Easy and I will see that card again in 2 days instead of tomorrow.

When you have finished all the cards, you will see a message telling you that "you have finished this deck for now." Anki makes you wait 1 or more day before you can practice with a deck again. It means you are done with that deck for the day! However, what if you want to study with that deck some more anyway? See the next section (Custom Study) below.

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Custom Study (how to study more)

Click here to learn how to Custom Study using AnkiDroid.

If you need to study a deck but it says you have finished, you can still study it again in the same day. You can study some or all of the cards. To do that, you need to start a Custom Study session. Custom Study is not available on AnkiWeb. You will need to use the Anki software. Here's how:

A screen shot of a finished deck with a Custom Study button. A screen shot of the next window telling Anki to 'Study by card state' and 'All cards in random order (cram mode)'. A screen shot of the next window showing the ability to include or exclude tags, with two green circles for including tags and one red circle for not using tags at all.

  1. When you are finished with a deck and see the message, click on "Custom Study".
  2. Click on "Study by card state or tag", select how many cards (any high number, such as 100), and click on "All cards in random order (cram mode)."
  3. Anki will then ask if you want to pick cards that use tags.

Wait, what are tags? They are added to cards so Anki can find them for Custom Study sessions. For example in the picture above I only want to study S1 (Set 1, colored grey). If I go to Browse I can see that my Spelling CC deck has 24 cards and there is "S1" in the tag. Not all cards in the deck have the S1 tag.
Picture of the Browse window with the Spelling CC deck, 24 cards total, and a tag that reads: CC L1 S1.

If in the Browse window I click on the S1 tag on the left, I can see that there are only 12 cards with the S1 tag.
Picture of the Browse window with the S1 tag highlighted, only 12 cards, and the S1 tag highlighted on one of the cards.
As I chose to study S1 cards only, I will study those 12 S1 cards and not the other 12 cards that do not have the S1 tag. Remember, I have 24 total cards.

A window showing that the Custom Study session has 12 New cards to review.
A window showing the Spelling CC deck (with no cards to study) and the Custom Study deck (with 12 new cards to study
As you can see, that will make a "new deck." It is not a real deck and your work will not be saved. It borrows the cards from your real decks. You can click on Rebuild to start studying that deck again and you can click on Empty to send all the cards back to their decks (and change the New cards to 0).

Screen shot of what a card in a custom study session looks like
On a Custom Study card, you will see only 2 buttons - "Again" and "Good". The Custom Study session will not save when you will see a card again - it is only for practice (like if you need to study for a quiz!!!!!). When you are done Custom Studying, remember to Empty or Delete that Custom Deck so you can use the cards again for normal study.

Remember, AnkiWeb cannot create a Custom Study session. If you know a quiz or test is coming very soon plan ahead so you will be able to use an Anki software, or use your paper notes to study instead.

Actually, you can sort of Custom Study on AnkiWeb, but it is not very good. First, create a Custom Study on your Anki software or App. After that, Sync and send that deck to AnkiWeb! However, you can study that deck only one time. You cannot Rebuild or Empty it. Therefore, it is much better to use the Anki software or app to Custom Study.

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Our Anki decks

Important Note: beginning March 8, I am using a different template for all Anki decks. If you need to edit or flip your cards, make sure you change both the old template (before March 8) and the new one.

Period D ELA

6/7 note: I used phonology instead of phonics in the Phon deck by mistake. Sorry! You can edit it using AnkiWeb or your software/app.

Deck FileDate AddedAdditional Note
PerDDict.zipJune 15, 2015speak
PerDAnthroHomo.zipJune 7, 2015man
PerDPhon.zipMay 29, 2015sound
PerDMin.zipMay 27, 2015small
PerDCyclOrb.zipMay 17, 2015roundness
PerDArch.zipMay 10, 2015ruler
PerDCursCurrCours.zipMay 4, 2015run
PerDCarnCorp.zipApril 26, 2015body
PerDGraphGram.zipApril 8, 2015write
PerDSpecSpic.zipApril 4, 2015see
PerDNumbers.zipMarch 30, 2015three, four, five, ten, hundred
PerDBiDu.zipMarch 24, 2015two
PerDUniMono.zipMarch 15, 2015one
PerDRectReg.zipMarch 8, 2015king
PerDCor.zipFebruary 21, 2015heart
PerDRotaVolv.zipFebruary 9, 2015turn
PerDPrimPrinProto.zipJanuary 25, 2015first
PerDFlamPyro.zipJanuary 19, 2015fire
PerDJectJet.zipJanuary 10, 2015throw
PerDBeneBon.zipJanuary 5, 2015good
PerDMaterPater.zipDecember 19, 2014mother, father
PerDCap.zipDecember 16, 2014head
PerDMobMot.zipDecember 7, 2014move
PerDAquaHydra.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)water
PerDChronTemp.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)time
PerDAstrStell.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)star
PerDPedPod.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)foot
PerDGen.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)birth
PerDMal.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)bad
PerDManu.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)hand
PerDMissMitt.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)send
PerD1.zipNovember 23, 2014 (revised)foli (leaf)

Periods E and F ELA

5/31 note: I misspelled convivial (missing the second i) in the Life and Death deck. Sorry! You can edit it using AnkiWeb or your software/app.

Deck FileDate Added
PerEF1-4.zipMay 29, 2015
PerEFLifeAndDeath.zipMay 25, 2015
PerEFAgainst.zipMay 17, 2015
PerEFRelatedTo.zipMay 10, 2015
PerEFInTheMaking.zipMay 4, 2015
PerEFPeople.zipApril 17, 2015
PerEFMoreStatesOfBeing.zipApril 8, 2015
PerEFStatesOfBeing.zipApril 4, 2015
PerEFConditional.zipMarch 30, 2015
PerEFResembling.zipMarch 23, 2015
PerEFWithAndWithout.zipMarch 15, 2015
PerEFMoreLikeWords.zipMarch 8, 2015 (fixed)
PerEFItsLike.zipFebruary 28, 2015
PerFAbleAndCapable.zipFebruary 9, 2015
PerFJustAsking.zipJanuary 25, 2015
PerFAllAboutWork.zipJanuary 10, 2015
PerFGreatAndSmall.zipJanuary 4, 2015
PerFFatherMotherBirth.zipDecember 14, 2014

Period E ELA

Deck FileDate Added
PerEFinSatTerm.zipDecember 7, 2014
PerEWaysOfWriting.zipNovember 30, 2014
PerEStructPortStru.zipNovember 23, 2014
PerEAllTogether.zipNovember 23, 2014 (fixed)
PerEOutside.zipNovember 9, 2014
PerEDiaPer.zipNovember 4, 2014
PerEAdReSe.zipOctober 27, 2014
PerECirCircumPeri.zipOctober 19, 2014
PerEProRetro.zipOctober 14, 2014
PerEForePrePost.zipOctober 6, 2014
PerEHyperSuper.zipSeptember 29, 2014
PerE1.zipSeptember 22, 2014

Period F ELA

Deck FileDate Added
PerFFinSatTerm.zipDecember 7, 2014
PerFWaysOfWriting.zipNovember 30, 2014
PerFAllTogether.zipNovember 23, 2014 (fixed)
PerFOutside.zipNovember 11, 2014
PerFDiaPer.zipNovember 4, 2014
PerFAdReSe.zipOctober 27, 2014
PerFCirCircumPeri.zipOctober 19, 2014
PerFProRetro.zipOctober 14, 2014
PerFForePrePost.zipOctober 6, 2014
PerFHyperSuper.zipSeptember 30, 2014
PerE1.zipSeptember 22, 2014

There is also an archive of older decks. I will organize it a bit better soon.

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Combining Anki decks

As you download and add more and more main decks, the Anki software will actually work slower. Also, you will easily know which cards are older and which cards are newer, so that makes it easier for you to answer correctly but harder for you to remember your answer in the long term.

Therefore, it is best to have as few main decks as possible. Understand that you don't want to, for example, combine your vocabulary deck with your state capital deck. But you do not need two separate vocabulary decks when one would be better. When different decks have been combined into one deck, we can use tags in the cards to help us separate them for Custom Study sessions and for Browse (such as Levels 1 and 2 or Sets 1 and 2). Here is how to combine decks into one big deck:

A window showing 2 separate decks with 12 cards each.
I have two decks, each with 12 cards. I want to move all the cards from Spelling CC L1 S2 into the Spelling CC deck.

The Browse window showing all cards in the Spelling CC L1 S2 deck being selected.
I click Browse and then I click on Spelling CC L1 S2 cards. I then click on all the cards in that deck by holding down the Shift key to select more than one card at a time (it works on both Mac and PC). After that, I click on "Change Deck" on the top.

A window telling the Change Deck window to Move Cards to the Spelling CC deck.
I select the deck I want to move the selected cards to. After that, I click the Move Cards button.

Now the Browse window shows all the L1 S2 cards being Spelling CC cards instead.
Now you can see in the above picture that the L1 S2 card all do not have "L1 S2" next to their names anymore. They are all Spelling CC cards now (see the yellow highlight).

Spelling CC has 24 cards now.  Spelling CC L1 S2 deck is being deleted. Spelling CC L1 S2 deck is now gone.
You can see that the Spelling CC deck has all the cards now and the L1 S2 deck has none. I can then delete the empty deck. Now the Anki software will work much better and you will be able to remember your cards better.

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That is all for now. I will update this page with new information as they come up. It can be hard to learn how to use a new program or website for a class, so please, please check with your classmates or see me if you have any questions. Your class is using Anki because I strongly feel it will help you for today and for the future. I know for sure because I use Anki too!

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©opyright 2017 by Richard Knopf
Updated June 15, 2015
Credits
-SRS -Need Anki