Tool Reviews



Watch overview videoAn Overview of Trello (1:49)


Trello is a simple-to-use web and mobile task tracking application that allows users to easily collaborate on projects.  The free version provides robust functionality, with additional features available to paying users. Trello also offers educational institutions a 30% pricing discount on paid subscriptions.

Leveraging the Kanban board concept of the Agile Project Management methodology, Trello allows users to create separate task lists or “boards”, which include three default lists inside – To Do, Doing, and Done.  Users can add tasks within these default lists; add custom lists; assign task due dates, categories, and responsibilities; and track task progress.

Justification for Using this Tool

Trello provides an elegant online collaboration interface for project-based learning. Users can break a large assignment into individual tasks, assign responsibilities and due dates, and manage progress in real-time.  Trello’s visual Kanban boards allow users to view the overall project status at glance and also attach files or have discussions concerning individual tasks. This visual overview also promotes accountability within group projects.

Strategies for Use

Strategy 1 – Trello for Group Projects

Watch overview videoTrello for Group Projects (1:12)

Trello provides an excellent framework for managing project-based learning initiatives, especially for group projects.  Students can create boards and customize task lists to suit their own needs or use one of Trello’s board templates to get them started.

Strategy 2 – Time and Task Management for Students with Trello

Watch overview videoTime and Task Management for Students with Trello (0:48)

Trello is a fantastic time management tool for anyone, including students. Unlike calendar applications, which don’t monitor progress and typically can only display 1 month of data at a time, a Trello board works beautifully as a semester planning for any student.

Helpful Resources

Resource 1 – What is Kanban?

This article explains the origins of Kanban boards and users can implement them for effective project management.  While the article situates Kanban in a software development context, other types of projects can also effectively use these boards.

Resource 2 – Trello Essential Training

This tutorial from LinkedIn Learning (formerly outlines the basic use of Trello boards including setup, task management, user administration, progress tracking, and integration with third-party applications such as cloud storage services and calendars.

Resource 3 – Trello For Students

This blog post explains a student perspective on how one could use Trello both for specific projects as well as general task management at school.

Resource 4 – Trello – Online Tools for Teaching & Learning

This article outlines several ways teachers can integrate Trello into their learning environments. It suggests usages at each level from elementary school through higher education.


Chen, L., & Chen, X. (2017). How to manage library projects with trello. Computers in Libraries, 37(4), 19-23. Retrieved from

Ray, N. (2016). Prioritize, plan, and maintain motivation with trello. The Agricultural Education Magazine, 88(6), 16-17. Retrieved from

Ruiz-Gallardo, J., González-Geraldo, J. L., & Castaño, S. (2016). What are our students doing? Workload, time allocation and time management in PBL instruction. A case study in science education. Teaching and Teacher Education, 53, 51-62. doi:

Wijnen, M., Loyens, S. M. M., Smeets, G., Kroeze, M., & van der Molen, H. (2017). Comparing problem-based learning students to students in a lecture-based curriculum: Learning strategies and the relation with self-study time. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 32(3), 431-447. doi:


Submitted by: Richard Freeman
Web Page:
Bio: Rich Freeman is a Professor of Computer Studies at Georgian College in Barrie, Ontario and a Master of Education candidate at Ontario Tech University.


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

E-Learning Essentials 2020 Copyright © 2020 by Power Learning Solutions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book