September 23, 2023
Is IXL really free? This article explores the features and limitations of IXL's free version, compares it to alternative platforms like Khan Academy, and provides tips on how to maximize the free trial. It also delves into the benefits of investing in IXL's paid version and offers recommendations based on unique student needs.


Are you on the hunt for an online learning resource that is both effective and affordable? You might have come across IXL, a popular platform that claims to offer free learning resources for kids of all ages. But is IXL really free? The answer, as you might expect, is not straightforward. In this article, we’ll explore IXL in depth to help you understand the features and limitations of its free version. We’ll also examine alternatives to IXL and provide tips on how to maximize its free trial. Lastly, we’ll explore whether IXL’s free version is enough to help your child succeed, and help you determine whether investing in the paid version is worth it.

IXL: What You Need to Know About Its Free Version

Before we delve into IXL’s free version, let’s first define what IXL is. IXL is an online learning platform that offers interactive practice problem sets for math, language arts, science, and social studies. It tracks a student’s progress as they move through the curriculum, providing both immediate feedback and detailed reports for parents and teachers. IXL is designed to be engaging and fun for students, with plenty of visual representations, animations, and storytelling.

Now, turning to IXL’s free version, it does exist. When you first sign up for IXL, you are given access to limited features. While IXL’s free version certainly has some useful features, there are a few key differences between the free and paid versions.

Features included in IXL’s free version:

  • Access to a limited number of practice problems for math, English language arts, science, and social studies
  • Immediate feedback on answers
  • Badges and awards to motivate students
  • Ability to track a student’s progress

Differences between IXL’s free and paid versions:

  • Access to the full curriculum across all grades and subjects
  • Ability to personalize learning with custom problem sets
  • Access to more detailed progress reports and insights
  • Unlimited questions and practice opportunities

Subjects and grade levels available in IXL’s free version:

  • Math: grades K-12
  • English language arts: grades 2-12
  • Science: grades 2-8
  • Social studies: grades 2-8

5 Alternatives to IXL for Free Online Learning

While IXL is a popular choice for online learning, it’s not the only option out there. There are plenty of free online learning platforms that offer similar features and benefits. Let’s take a look at five alternatives to IXL:

  • Khan Academy: A non-profit organization that offers free video lessons, tutorials, and problem sets for all ages across a wide range of subjects.
  • ABCmouse: An online learning platform designed for young learners (ages 2-8) that uses games, songs, and interactive activities to teach reading, math, science, and social studies.
  • Prodigy: A math learning platform designed for elementary and middle school students that combines gaming and fun animations with adaptive learning.
  • CodeCademy: A platform that teaches coding skills via interactive lessons, quizzes, and projects.
  • BBC Bitesize: A UK-based learning resource that offers games, videos, and quizzes across a wide range of subjects for students of all ages

Each of these platforms has its own unique features and benefits. It’s worth taking some time to explore each one and decide which might be the best fit for your child.

How to Get the Most Out of IXL’s Free Trial

If you’re interested in trying out IXL’s paid version, the platform offers a free trial that you can sign up for. During the free trial, you’ll have access to all of IXL’s paid features. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your free trial:

  • Set goals: Before you start using IXL, take some time to think about what goals you want your child to achieve. This will help you focus on specific skills and subjects while using the platform.
  • Track progress: One of the benefits of IXL is its progress tracking features. Make sure to regularly check in on your child’s progress and use the insights to adjust your approach if necessary.
  • Personalize learning: Use IXL’s personalized learning features to focus on areas where your child might need extra practice or challenge.
  • Use feedback constructively: Encourage your child to use IXL’s immediate feedback to learn from mistakes and improve over time.
  • Make it fun: Learning doesn’t have to be dry or boring. Encourage your child to use IXL as a fun and engaging way to learn new skills.

Is IXL’s Free Version Enough to Help Your Child Succeed?

Now that we’ve explored the features and limitations of IXL’s free version, it’s important to ask the question: is it enough to help your child succeed? The answer, as with many things, is “it depends.”

For some students, IXL’s free version will be sufficient to support their learning. The free version offers a good selection of practice problems across a range of subjects and grade levels. The immediate feedback and progress tracking features are also valuable tools. However, if your child needs more customization, a wider range of practice problems, and more detailed insights into their progress, it might be worth investing in the paid version of IXL.

IXL vs. Khan Academy: Which One Offers Better Free Learning Resources?

One common alternative to IXL is Khan Academy, a non-profit learning organization that offers free video lessons and practice problems across a wide range of subjects. So, how does IXL’s free version compare to Khan Academy? Let’s take a look:

IXL’s free version:

  • Offers a range of practice problems across math, English language arts, science, and social studies
  • Tracks a student’s progress and provides immediate feedback
  • Offers a fun and engaging user interface
  • Provides some customization options

Khan Academy:

  • Offers video lessons and practice problems across a wider range of subjects, including economics, computer science, and standardized tests (like the SAT)
  • Provides instructional and tutorial videos
  • Is completely free and non-profit
  • Allows users to work at their own pace and style

Overall, while both platforms offer valuable features and benefits, IXL’s free version is more focused on providing interactive practice problems, while Khan Academy offers a wider variety of learning resources and an in-depth learning experience that goes beyond just practice problems.

From Free to Paid: How IXL’s Upgrade Options Can Benefit Students

If you’ve decided that investing in the paid version of IXL is the right choice for your child, you might be wondering what additional benefits you can expect. Here are some of the key features of IXL’s paid version:

  • Full access to the curriculum across all subjects and grade levels
  • Personalized learning with custom problem sets
  • More detailed progress reports and insights for parents and teachers
  • Unlimited practice opportunities and access to new content

IXL offers three subscription options: monthly, yearly, or family. Monthly and yearly subscriptions are priced at $9.95 and $79 respectively, while the family subscription, which allows multiple users to access the platform, is priced at $19.95 per month or $159 per year.

Choosing the right subscription option will depend on your child’s specific needs and learning goals. If your child needs ongoing support across a range of subjects, the family subscription might be the best option. Alternatively, if your child needs extra help in a particular area, the monthly or yearly subscription might be more appropriate.


So, is IXL really free? Yes, but its free version comes with some limitations. While IXL’s free version can be a valuable resource for students, it’s worth exploring alternative platforms like Khan Academy and taking advantage of IXL’s free trial to determine whether investing in the paid version is worth it for your child. By setting goals, tracking progress, and personalizing learning, IXL’s free and paid versions can offer students of all ages an engaging and effective online learning experience.

So, what are you waiting for? Give IXL, Khan Academy, or another learning platform a try and see how it can benefit your child’s academic success.

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