Falling asleep on your textbooks? Having a hard time organizing your time with four or more courses each term? Trying to balance work, education, and your social life and failing miserably? This sample computer science essay explores the top 10 study apps for college students.
Scribd: A library on your phone
Scribd is the world’s biggest online library, composed of documents, ebooks, audiobooks, students’ notes, and texts that are helpful to college students all over the world. It’s no wonder it’s first on our list of the top 10 study apps for college students. For a nominal monthly fee, access is available from any device to the online library.
Described as a “Netflix for new and backlist books” by Entrepreneur.com’s Jenna Schnuer, you can read anywhere and store books on your WiFi tablet as well. Scribd also began providing audiobooks in 2014, which is a helpful hands-free option if you want to catch up on some reading while you’re, say, cooking dinner, or running a half-marathon.
Scribed is available on Android, iOS, and Windows tablets and smartphones. Personal computers, Kindle, and Nook charge a fee for use of the app. 900 publishers are currently involved and in February 2015, comic books were added as well. So get your geek on and check out Scribd; it’s a great source for increasing your understanding of any subject or (as the one of the most fun apps for college students) a little downtime between study sessions. Some sources may not meet academic source guidelines. Learn more about evaluating Internet sources.
Dropbox: Access homework and notes on the go
Study apps free up time for students to help them get work done. However, the best study apps are the ones that can be used at school and work. Useful for college students and business professionals alike, this app allows storage of documents, images, or videos in the cloud, allowing access to them from anywhere. If you can’t access your files, after all, you can’t study or write that amazing paper. While other apps struggle to catch up to cloud technology, rest assured that your documents are safe and sound with this tried and true app. You can choose who has access to any of your files and never worry about leaving a device at home or anywhere else.
Related App: An alternative to Dropbox is Google Docs or MS Word
SparkNotes: Understanding difficult texts
CliffsNotes was the original, and now most popular, study guide for classic and widely-read books. Its familiar name leads many college students to its website for material that’s archaic or hard to understand. CliffsNotes is helpful, but not as helpful as SparkNotes, which provides not only basic notes about the book you didn’t have time to read but five different sections which are very helpful when writing a literature review or argument: context, plot overview, character list (what was the one girl’s name again?), analysis of major characters, and themes, motifs symbols. As if this wasn’t enough, Sparknotes also includes a chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis. Sparknotes has recently added a “Study Tools” section, which explains quotations, key facts, and suggests essay topics in case you are drawing a blank. All in all, Sparknotes is much more in-depth than CliffsNotes and will make you look smarter during your collegiate career and beyond.
Did the US Government overstep their boundaries? Get the “SparkNotes” on Operation Choke Point.
EasyBib: Citations with the best study app for online college students
Please learn to correctly create citations and references for your paper. Your professors, your adjunct professors, and your grades will thank you for it. But for when you’ve just finished an exhaustingly difficult and lengthy research paper, scan the barcode on your textbook for an instant population of your reference and cut and paste it into your paper. References can be tricky, and some professors are sticklers for the placement of every comma and period. There’s nothing worse than writing an excellent paper and then getting marked down for incorrect referencing.
For familiarity and long-term retention, the Purdue Owl website is the best, but when you’re in a time crunch EasyBib puts those references right at your fingertips. EasyBib makes it easy to create accurate citations in various styles in the comfort of your home, cafe, or anywhere you choose to study. It’s simple and easy to use, making it one of the essential study apps for high school students to learn before going to college. Read more about EasyBib and its competition.
Studious: Keeping track of all course information
Well, it’s about time we got rid of those old notebooks and cluttered smartphone calendars with no space for course information. It’s also about time we were able to keep track of everything for every course we have. This fabulous app’s name is Studious, and it keeps track of homework deadlines, lecture days and times, and course titles. You can enter professor information as well as the building and room the course is in. The reminding portion of the app will let you know when you’re late for lectures or have an exam on the horizon. So go ahead and sleep in for a few more minutes, because you’re not due in class for another thirty.
Virt U: The Virtual University
Ever wished you were attending Harvard, and learning everything its students were? Now you can view lectures from top universities like MIT, Harvard, Oxford, and UC Berkeley without gaining admission. This popular technology for graduate students is useful for research, or for just about any subject you might be interested in. Similar to the popular TED but more focused on academia, saved lectures are available offline whenever you need them. Facebook Connect allows you to see which lectures your friends or peers are watching, and post smartphone comments to the VirtU forum from anywhere. So get downloading and learn something they don’t teach at your university. Virt U is truly one of the best apps for college students.
Droid Scan Lite: Capture those whiteboard notes
Scanners are a thing of the past; this app lets you use your smartphone’s camera as a scanner for documents, whiteboard notes, a sample paper, or anything you want to scan into your smartphone or computer. The images can be saved as JPEG files and are high-resolution. Best of all, it’s free unless you want better resolution; in that case, you can purchase Droid Scan Pro. The scanned images can then be stored in the aforementioned Dropbox for access on the go.
Is studying stressing you out? Here are 20 ways to manage stress while getting your graduate degree.
SelfControl: Block distracting communications
In order to study well and retain information, you need to avoid distractions. These include your boyfriend, your roommates, your family, and most importantly, social media. SelfControl acts like you wish your conscience would by blocking distracting websites and apps while you get your studying done or finish listening to a lecture. Self-control: If you have none, get some with this app.
StudyBlue: Improve memory retention
The StudyBlue app has been around for a while, now, but it still one of the best digital flashcard apps out there to boost memory for those final exams cementing its place as one of the top 10 study apps for college students. You can create your own files or use some a peer-created for the same subject or course at an earlier time. Filters available in the app help skip over ideas you are familiar with and allow review of ideas you need to work on. Collaboration with friends and classmates through the app virtually adds to your knowledge and exam preparedness. StudyBlue has reminders for approaching tests so you aren’t cramming into the wee hours the night before.
Evernote: Manage cluttered notebooks
The Evernote app is useful not just for studying, but for keeping track of ideas and other tasks as well. After all, sometimes you’re in class listening to a lecture, and remember something you need to do after school; and sometimes you’re getting a bite to eat and think of a fantastic idea for the subject of your Latin American History term paper. It’s free and can be used to take notes or record voice memos. The clipboard saves relevant articles or website pages for studying from wherever you happen to be when the mood strikes.
Download the best apps for college students
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