The new generation of college students are using their mobile access more than ever before to complete school work. Having the ability to write on the go, research while on the bus, take notes during class without clunky notebooks, and look up scholarly articles online is now a standard in the twenty-first century. After thousands of dollars invested in higher-education, most students are very financially conscious which is why all of the apps shared here are free to download.
One of the most effective and easiest ways to access files on the go, Google Drive, is available on both Android and Apple devices in addition to a personal computer. No need to carry around a thumb drive full of documents or worry about not having access to them on the go. Users can upload files to the cloud, share files with collaborators or teachers, and even edit documents. It also allows for the creation of word documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and graphics, which are compatible with most applications such as MS Word, Excel, Keynote and others. Google Drive is also perfect for students working in groups since it allows for the simultaneous sharing of files and editing of documents. And users can put dates in a calendar and remind themselves of upcoming tests, assignments and of course days off. It also has 15 GB worth of storage allows for plenty of storage for part-time and full-time students. What’s the best part? Google Drive is FREE with any Gmail account!
While reading those huge text books and writing the dreaded final paper, every student needs to have a dictionary on hand! Not everyone will understand lengthy words read during those crepuscular study sessions with pizza. Whether it’s looking up a word the user doesn’t understand or finding a replacement word to add a little pizazz to their paper, the Dictionary.com app has everything a student needs! It comes with the standard 2,000,000 definitions, presents synonyms (no thesaurus necessary), offers the ability to sign up for a word of the day, and can even translate up to 35 different languages! The app is also available offline when data limits have been reached or WiFi isn’t available on that weekend camping trip. The Dictionary.com App is available Android and Apple devices and in the Amazon App Store. This app is definitely one that every online student needs.
Some of the most time consuming tasks while writing papers is making the bibliography and citations! Students, don’t lose points for improper citations, use EasyBib! Just scan the book’s barcode with a camera phone and voila! Perfect citation. Students and users can also search the app for citations from other books and websites if a physical book or website isn’t available. The app also gives the student the option to create citations in MLA, APA, Chicago, Harvard and 7,000 other formats. The citations have been checked by librarians and teachers and guarantee the most accurate bibliography. It’s as simple as exporting the list of citations to an email and copy/paste. EasyBib takes a daunting task and makes it easy so students can focus on the more important content in their paper! (Available for download in the Apple or Android App Store.)
This may seem like it belongs in a social media section or ways to connect with parents, friends, or the long distance relationship. However, Skype has made a definite imprint on the educational community. It’s a great way to contact a professor (if permitted) to set up a virtual meeting or get together with fellow classmates on a group project. Not everyone’s schedules will overlap or will be able to meet in person, especially in e-learning cases. Skype is the perfect solution to navigate around those road bumps and have the closest thing to an in-person meeting. Many companies are even using it for job interviews so it’s prudent for students to get used to video-calling sooner rather than later. Of course it doesn’t hurt to call mom and dad every now and then. Skype is available for download for both Apple and Android devices and can be used from your phone, tablet, or home computer.
StudyBlue Flashcards (https://www.studyblue.com/study-tools)
Let’s face it, no student likes to study. And one of the most effective ways to study is to quiz yourself with things like flashcards. But those have always been a hassle to make—until now. StudyBlue lets students create their own flashcards from text, audio, video, and photos for free! By signing up for a free account at StudyBlue, students can track their results and don’t need to be connected to the internet. By pretending it’s another game on your phone or tablet, students are on their way to ace that next test! StudyBlue also allows students to browse over 350 million cards, notes, and study guides that other college and high school students have created. Available on the Apple App store or Android App Store for download.
Everyone has those days when they forget everything they need to do. With the Todoist App add tasks, create long-term projects, take notes, and organize by labels and filters. It also gives the options to create multiple priorities, add what they call “human due dates,” share and collaborate on projects with other users, and set reminders via email or push notifications. It can help students remember to turn in those pesky discussion questions or meet with Suzie on a final project. It’s also great for the returning student who has to manage a full-time job, taking care of the kiddos, and fit schoolwork into a busy schedule. Available via a free online account or through the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android.
Learning Management Systems
Almost every college uses some sort of Learning Management System (LMS) for their students and most have their own apps for mobile devices. Moodle, Blackboard, Canvas, LearnTrak LMS, and My Big Campus are all examples of LMS programs with apps! Students can stay connected to their classes on the go when they don’t have access to a computer. They can check their grades, participate in discussion boards, read assignments, study material, and even turn in assignments on a tight deadline. Students should check if their college has an LMS with a mobile app. Even if a student doesn’t use it for everyday learning, there may be that one day when a student forgets to turn in an assignment and start panicking because they’re on a plane to Alaska. Don’t worry. They can finish the assignment through Google Drive or another cloud storage option, and use the LMS mobile app to turn in the assignment on time. Crisis averted. Check your school’s LMS app for details.
The United States Sports Academy App
Saving the best for last, the United States Sports Academy App is now available to students and other users for free! Explore current news stories about contemporary issues in sport on The Sport Digest, read peer-reviewed articles on The Sport Journal, and receive the latest Academy news. It also archives videos of Sports Talk, the Academy’s weekly live broadcast on hot topics in sport. Users can watch videos and read more about the Academy’s programs and degrees. App users are encouraged to engage on social media, including Facebook and Twitter, and are able to sign up for exclusive monthly e-newsletters. Access to the bookstore via the app also makes it extremely convenient for users to purchase their books, gifts, school apparel, and even fine art prints. This new app will become a trusted resource for students, alumni, and others in the sports industry. The amount of quality information accessible in one place attest to the Academy’s hard work as the world’s only free-standing regionally accredited school of sport and largest graduate school of sport in the world. Go to http://tiny.cc/ussa to see a preview of the app and download it to your mobile device.
Ms. Jennifer Kelly is the Webmaster for the United States Sports Academy, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Please note that this article is not endorsed by any of the above apps or companies.