There's An App For That: GVSU Helps Develop Screen Time App For Parents

Aug 7, 2017

Test 4 Time App
Credit GVSU /

A Grand Valley State University group has developed an app for a local entrepreneur.  It allows children to “earn” screen time on their electronic devices. 

“The students get an incredible learning experience, because they’re really learning what to do for a real client.  It helps prepare our students for the real world and I think that’s a real a benefit for the students and the community.”

That’s Brent Nowak, Executive Director of the Applied Medical Device Institute at GVSU.  He’s talking about an App that was recently developed for a local entrepreneur that helps parents with a common problem.  How to address the amount of time their kids spend on electronic devices.

“And, it is an app, that asks the child math questions, anywhere from kindergarten to 6th grade level math, and every correct answer, the child earns time to use their phone or tablet, to do web searches, play games etc.. So it’s a means to have them earn the time by answering questions correctly.”

The app is called Test 4 time, and is available in the google play store.  Nowak says Grand Valley’s Applied Medical Device Institute students made the app after a local entrepreneur, Tim Smock, form Forest Hills came up with the idea.  He first worked with students from the School of Computing and Information systems to build a prototype of the app.  Nowak says it then came to him and his team.

“We engaged students and faculty all across the University and we look at what’s the best trajectory, not just to solve his problem, but how can, in this case, the business case, so how  can he generate revenues so if he has other ideas he wants to develop.”

Nowak says their next step, already in the works, is to develop a hardware device with the test 4 time that allows kids to earn time on the TV and Video game consoles.