Study, study, study
The point of higher education is learning, but this can get lost in the madness of young life. To keep you on track, iStudiez Lite (free) is a calendar app and ‘to do’ list that helps manage class schedules, teacher contacts, and upcoming assignments or tests. The free version gets you a semester’s worth of control, including alerts and alarms. Pay the $2.99 upgrade to iStudiez Pro for push notifications, backup options and other features.
Savvy students know that bibliographies are an oft-painful part of research projects. To lighten the load, RefMe syncs essay sources and citations to the cloud for import into word processing software. Log in with your academic email address and get all the premium features for free.
Dropbox, Google Documents, e-mail – every group assignment has their preference for sharing documents. Sort them out with apps like Documents which work with a range of platforms (including iCloud, and Microsoft OneDrive) to list all your stuff in one place. You can also annotate PDFs, edit Microsoft documents, read e-books, and browse pics from the one app.
If you have to deal with algebra, integrals, polynomials, or even algorithms, consider downloading Mathway, a free app-based calculator that reduces complex equations into absorbable solutions.
Textbooks can be a big financial hole, which makes programs like Chegg a lifesaver. Rent and buy discounted books (or read them online) thanks to this handy resource. Chegg’s study section also connects students with online tutors at the click of a button.
Academic writing is a whole new ballgame, one that relies on verified facts to take your essays from a mere pass to a coveted distinction. Search engine Wolfram Alpha is here to provide them: it answers factual questions from ‘curated data’, (rather than giving a list of documents or web pages like Google might) with linked references for that gruelling bibliography section.
Keep it productive
Remember that prevention is better than the cure, and this applies to passwords. Password protectors such as 1Password and LastPass add an extra layer of security and streamline multiple logins into one spot.
Write text messages, emails, Tweets, or even Facebook updates with the sweet and simple power of your voice. Dragon Dictation works well on iOS and Dragon Remote Microphone is tight on Android.
If you’re someone who thinks visually, consider expanding your mind on-screen with the help of a MindMapping program like XMind. It’s currently limited to desktop, but available across Mac, Windows and Linux.
Taking notes quickly is part of any productive student’s life, which makes programs like Evernote a godsend. Write ‘em, snap ‘em, however you want to take ‘em—Evernote will capture whatever you scribble down and it syncs with almost every platform in your backpack. Or pitch in for the Everlast ‘reusable’ notebook currently smashing its targets on Kickstarter!
You gotta live, too
You’ve sussed the study. You’re super productive. Now you need to live! This might mean getting around town, chilling out, working up a sweat, or just filling in the breaks between classes. Whatever the activity, there’s an app for that.
Restaurants. Traffic. Caffeine… the Google app is a voice-activated search engine that’ll connect you with almost anything you want to know about a new city.
Navigating town is one thing, but how do you know what’s good? Head to Broadsheet for nearby caffeine hits, local news, and new restaurants, or try The Thousands and Concrete Playground for more sub-cultural happenings.
Self-care can fall off the list with so many new distractions, but put it front and centre with assistance from the Nike+ Training Club, which packs over 130 workouts for all levels into one place. Want to stretch out between classes (and not pay a small fortune)? The Yoga Studio app ($3.99) for both iOS and Android comes inbuilt with 65 yoga classes that range from beginner to advanced.
Maximise down time with an alarm clock app like Sleep Cycle, which will monitor your REMs and wake you during your lightest sleep phase. Or give a busy mind a break with Headspace, the mindfulness app that can help lower stress levels, reduce anxiety, and is available to use wherever you end up.
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