Skritter Mobile Guide

Skritter Mobile Guide Contents:

Your guide to the Skritter mobile applications. Get the latest versions of our mobile apps here: 

Chinese (Android)
Chinese (iOS)

Japanese (Android)
Japanese (iOS)

Be sure to email with any questions, and happy studying! 

Video Guide

The Complete Guide to the Skritter Apps from Skritter on Vimeo.

Home Screen

The Home screen allows you to quickly access all of your active decks (lists) on Skritter. Daily reviews appear at the top of the screen until the queue has no cards due anymore. After tapping the button you can configure your review activity any way you'd like. If you're looking for more control, or longer study sessions you can choose the decks you're studying from and/or turn on advanced settings to enter a continuous review session that will allow you to study endlessly until you end the study session.

Review Activities: 

Skritter's review activities are a collection of cards from everything you're studying on your account. There are currently two ways to review on Skritter-- Daily Review, and Continuous Review. The number of reviews due each day is a combination of new cards added to the queue after being studied in Learn mode, cards you're struggling to remember, and cards that you're likely to forget without a reminder now and then. Review activities are similar to the classic SRS system on the website and previous mobile apps. Want to learn new things and add them to review? Select the deck of your choice from the Home screen and tap the Learn button, or go to the deck section of your choice.

Time Attack (NEW):

Combine a little bit of luck with writing prowess and get Time Attack! Each session randomly selects 20 items from popular study materials on both Chinese and Japanese. The top 25 high scores are displayed on each individual deck along with your personal best times, and rank if you're on the high scores. 

Time Attack is still a beta feature and under active development. Learn more here, and please note that times may be reset in the future as we make improvements. We hope you have fun! 

Decks & Deck Management

Decks are a collection of characters, words, and phrases. The decks that you are actively studying will appear on your Home screen for quick access. To view and manage all of your decks (active, reviewing from, and decks you have created) go to the My Library tab from the Decks screen. View the contents of a deck, and access Learn mode and Test by tapping on the deck of your choice.
Wanna watch a video instead? Click here.

Once on a deck's main screen, you can see details about your progress, or go to specific sections. From the main screen you can go into a learning activity (tapping the button will you to the next non-studied item in the deck based on overall deck progress), take a deck-level test, or go to individual sections for more focused studying and testing. 

As a note, some decks have corresponding videos inside! Look out for the video icon on any deck that contains one. 

Learn Mode:

Study new vocabulary from the deck (or deck section) of your choice. If you’ve already learned something outside Skritter tap the “Mark as Learned” option on the Preview card. Once studied, cards will ready for long-term retention and due for review. If there is a word you don't want to be added to your review queue, just tap on the info button and ban it. 

A guided learning experience that shows comprehensive information before teaching the proper stoker order and allowing for lots of character writing practice. 
Practical Application:
Learn anything you want at your own pace. Perfect for classroom settings and more casual learning with Skritter’s hand-made content or tons of textbooks and decks. 

Test Mode: 

Test your skills on any deck or deck section you want. Sort by individual card types, and even ignore banned items or study things have learned on Skritter yet.


A study mode designed to aid short-term memory skills and test overall comprehension. The perfect opportunity for extended practice to help solidify new things you’re learning for the first time, and a way to quickly and repeatedly study vocabulary.

Practical Application:
Perfect for preparing for daily vocabulary tests, or studying targeted sets of vocabulary from decks or deck sections. Also, great for a quick personal challenge of the things you’re learning! Tests target short-term memory. Extended practice to help solidify things you're studying in Learn mode and increase your chances to mark " got it" with confidence the first time it appears in your review queue! 
Note: Expired subscriptions can only test learned items on Premium content.

Note: The ability to view and study incorrect cards at the end of a test will be coming in a future version of the app. 

Deck Management

Access the deck management options by tapping on the vertical option button on the top-right of the screen. This will bring up an action menu for all the things you can currently change inside the mobile app. Official decks cannot be edited, but you can make a copy of the deck and make changes. Please note that any official deck art and videos will not be included with your personal copy. Bulk-adding options will be coming to future versions of the app. 

Making and Editing Custom Decks:

Language learning is a personal experience and the mobile app offers you the ability to create custom Decks anytime and anywhere. Tap on the plus button on the My Library tab of the Deck's screen and give your new deck a name! Once your deck has a name, you'll be taken to the Deck's main info screen. 

Tap the pencil icon to edit the name, add a description, add names to sections, and add/remove sections as you see fit. After sections have been added tap the save icon on the top-right of the screen. Each deck section can have up to 200 vocabulary items in it ( we recommend keeping list sections more manageable, with between 10-50 items, for a more pleasant studying and testing experience). 

Add vocabulary items to your deck sections by tapping the plus icon on the bottom-right of the screen. Search in pinyin or characters on the Chinese side, and use Kanji, Kana, or Romaji on the Japanese side. Skritter's database has thousands upon thousands of entries, and sometimes you might need to select what you're looking from the screen. Skritter tries to recommend the most common entries, but the app displays anything that comes up in the query so be sure to double-check before you add something to your new deck! Once you're done, tap the save button and you'll be able to Learn, Test, and Review everything from your new deck!

Writing Canvas and Study Screen Buttons:

Skritter was built first and foremost to be a tool to help you learn to read and write Chinese and Japanese. Depending on the study mode you're using the writing canvas might look slightly different than what is pictured above, but the core functionality will always be the same. To see example sentences and popular/custom mnemonics directly from the study cards swipe right or left on the top portion of the card as shown below (note: not all cards have example sentences or mnemonics, but we will continue to create more and will be offering custom sentence support soon!) 

From the writing canvas, and other cards you can access the Quick Settings menu on the top-right of the screen. Quick settings are for options you might want to change during a study session, however, it doesn't display all options that are available. All options can be configured in your account level settings-- see the Settings area below. 

Word-level grading is available on writing and tone cards (Chinese only) when items are two or more characters, and when "Advanced SRS grading" is enabled. Adjust the score by tapping the grade on the top of the card. This can be used to bypass character-level grading on cards and gives you more degree of control. 

Open the Additional Information screen by tapping the icon. On this screen, you can star and ban vocabulary, edit definitions, add/edit mnemonics, view your study progress, and view example sentences. You can also submit corrections for vocabulary related errors in the app directly from this screen.

Vocabulary audio is indicated by an Audio button on both study cards and the Additional Information screen*. If you open this screen before answering a card, it will automatically be marked incorrect ("forgot").   

* Note: We strive to provide high-quality audio from native speakers of Chinese and Japanese in our applications and are adding new audio to Skritter regularly. 

Tapping the  Teaching Mode button automatically plays vocabulary audio (if available) and helps you check a character's composition and stroke order. It also marks the card as incorrect, which you can change manually if necessary.

Finally, you can navigate Back and Forward during your study activities. The Back button is useful for going back to re-write characters, correct accidental taps, and adjust grading. The Forward button automatically marks something as correct ("got it") and skips to the next card or part of the card. 


To access your account settings, tap the hamburger icon in the upper left corner from any of the main screens in the app and then select Settings from the slide-out menu. Select between User, Study, and Subscription settings at the bottom of the app. 

Study Settings:
Study settings for Skritter have been designed to try and meet all of your learning needs. Learn more about each setting in-app or below.

  • Advanced SRS grading: Turn this on for the classic 4-button (forgot, hard, got it, easy) Skritter experience during Review mode
  • Retention rate: Control your target retention rate for each card you're studying in Review mode. A higher retention rate means more reviews more often
  • Character style (Chinese only): Study Simplified, Traditional, or Both*
    * (Only enable "Both" if you have a specific reason why! Selecting both character styles will essentially double your reviews). 
  • Study Kana (Japanese only): Enabled by default. This allows you to study Kana handwriting and reading cards
  • Study definitions: Enable or disable to toggle on / off definition cards
  • Study readings: Enable or disable to toggle on / off reading cards
  • Study tones: Enable or disable to toggle on / off tone cards
  • Study writings: Enable or disable to toggle on / off writing cards
  • Bopomofo (Chinese only): Display Zhuyin instead of Pinyin. 
  • Heisig keywords: Enable for Heisig keywords (Remembering the Hanzi / Remembering the Kanji textbook series)
  • Popular mnemonics: Display mnemonics created by the Skritter community (note: these will not replace custom mnemonics you've created)
  • Basic writing: Enable for less flashy effects on the writing canvas and better performance
  • Streak effects: Creates increasing effects on the canvas when you are on a correct stroke streak
  • Grading colors: When enabled, written characters have a color overlay with the corresponding grading color
  • Raw squigs: A more authentic writing experience. No pretty stroke snapping-- what you write is what you see on the canvas
  • Rawest squigs: A pen and paper writing experience-- stroke recognition is disabled and automatic-grading is disabled on this writing mode for the ultimate challenge! 
  • Stylus input (BETA): Enable for thinner, pressure-sensitive strokes on compatible devices.
  • Animation speed: Adjust how fast stroke animation snaps to the canvas
  • Auto-advance: With auto-advance on, you can control the amount of time between cards once a grade has been detected. You can pause auto-advancing by tapping near the center of the screen at any time, which makes adjusting grading or re-writing a character again a breeze! 
  • Auto-advance speed: Adjust the amount of time it takes to move to the next card. Select the amount of time between cards when a card marked as correct ("got it") and the other grades will advance faster or slower depending on what you choose. 
  • Autoplay reading: Turning this off stops the app from automatically playing card audio while studying on Skritter. Tapping the audio icon on cards will still play word, character, or sentence audio if available
  • Sound effects: Enable for sound effects (separate from pronunciation audio)
  • Auto reveal: Automatically show hidden information once a card has been fully answered. (ex. on a writing card like 明天 the hidden information will not be displayed until 天 has been written)
  • Hide definition: Definitions are hidden on Reading cards and on Tone cards (Chinese only). They can be shown at any time by tapping "show definition" or at the end of the card if auto-reveal is on
  • Hide reading: Readings are hidden on Definition cards and on Tone cards (Chinese only). They can be shown at any time by tapping "show reading" or at the end of the card if auto-reveal is on

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