As students, it can often feel like we are being bombarded with apps that promise to make our life easier. Most of these apps, however, just end up adding unnecessary steps to our work routine or spamming our phones with notifications. But, somewhere in the mix, there are apps that will truly make your day more manageable.
From note-taking assistants to health trackers, smartphone apps are getting increasingly, well, smart. That said, how can you find the ones that are right for you?
To help navigate a productivity-crazy app store, I asked 10 college students what apps helped make their lives easier while in school. Here are their answers!
If you’ve been in college for longer than a semester, chances are you’ve already heard of Quizlet. For those who haven’t, this app/website, allows you to create flashcards to help study for your next exam. The app creates quizzes and games to help you learn faster, and lets you share flashcards with friends and classmates, making study groups that much easier. No need to buy packages of index cards and colorful pens. Just download Quizlet!
Pomodor - Time Tracker
Research shows studying in intervals and taking breaks are the most efficient ways to absorb information. If the idea of that seems like too much to organize on your own, Pomodor might be the perfect app for you. This app lets you add tasks, set timers, and schedule breaks. The only downside is the cost, but at only $0.99, if you struggle with managing your study time, it may definitely be worth purchasing.
We all know there are countless amounts of to-do list apps out there. That said, this one should be in every student’s phone. It’s easy to use, and it can sync between your phone, tablet, and computer, making it accessible anywhere you go. Reminders help you keep up with a busy schedule and a sharing option lets you assign tasks to others in your group!
Khan Academy lets you take learning outside of the classroom (if that's your thing) with videos, interactive games, and articles on almost every topic. You can even save certain content to “Your List” to store lessons for when you’re offline. Whether you need additional help for a class, or just want to learn more about a topic of interest, Khan Academy might be for you.
Microsoft One Note
If you’re looking to step up your note taking game, this one might be for you. You can take class notes, create to-do lists, jot down sticky notes, and even draw. It also syncs your notes to the cloud so that you can access them whenever you need. The app also makes sharing so easy by allowing users to create a shared notebook with friends!
If you are the type of person that needs complete silence to study, then you can skip over this one. However, if you like adding some background noise to your study sessions, Spotify is perfect for you. With premade playlists such as “Study Zone,” “Deep Concentration,” and “Just Focus,” you’ll be able to find music that is not distracting, but helps you stay in the zone.
Another app that lets you sync between your phone, laptop, and tablet, Google Calendar lets you schedule your life in class, at home, or on the go. Unlike a physical planner, this app makes it easier to change around details and lets you send event information to your friends and family. For those in clubs or sports, the “repeat” option is especially useful. Most schools provide Google accounts for all students, which is all you need to create your own personal calendar.
Whether it be for a class, study abroad, or just for fun, Duolingo is a gamechanger for those trying to master another language. The app provides an easy to follow learning-path that is nowhere near overwhelming, even for those who may typically struggle with foreign languages. With over 30 languages to choose from and activities that ask the user to use their reading, writing, and speaking skills, Duolingo can help you reach your bilingual (or even trilingual) goals before that Spanish test or semester in France!
Reflectly might not help with schoolwork, but it is a lifesaver when it comes to mental health. With 41% of students suffering from anxiety, and 36% suffering from depression, mental health amongst young adults is a growing concern. For many, especially those without a counselor or support from friends or family, college can start to feel isolating. Reflectly provides a safe space to write about your day without judgment. It will even create a streak, like Snapchat, for how many days users write in the app.
My Fitness Pal (MFP)
Like mental health, good physical health can be hard for college kids to keep up. MFP helps students track their eating and exercise habits, and it can even set up a recommended calorie intake amount based on your weight and weight gain/loss goals. This app is useful for those who want to begin eating healthy for the first time, to health experts who want to track their daily macros or goal progress.
This list is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to useful productivity apps. When it comes to time management, every student is different, and what works for one may not work for another. But, if you’re looking to start organizing a busy college schedule, these 10 apps may help you kickstart just that!
Caroline is an undergraduate student at Worcester State University. When she is not writing, she also runs a photography business specializing in portrait, wedding, and boudoir photography. She aims to use both writing and photography to empower women and encourage them to find their inner voice and confidence.