By Dr. Jarrod Sadulski
Faculty Member, Criminal Justice, American Public University
Being successful in college typically involves using all the resources that are available to you. But unexpected events and challenges with time management occur to nearly all college students.
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According to research by the National Student Clearinghouse, there are 36 million American adults who have some college education but did not finish their degree. This fact reflects how life and our busy schedules can create challenges while we attend classes. As a result, it is important to put a plan into place in order to overcome the common challenges that result in so many Americans beginning college but not graduating.
Many universities offer apps that enable students to log into their classroom from a smartphone or other mobile device. This technology provides a good opportunity for students to quickly get updates on what is going on in their classes, review grades and communicate with their instructors.
Utilizing other apps in addition to a university’s classroom app can be very effective in helping you succeed in your college education. There are six useful apps that can assist you with time management, an organized daily schedule, homework, collaboration with other students, exam preparation and research.
App #1: Evernote
One very helpful app for college students is Evernote. Evernote is free and has 255 million users.
Evernote provides you with the ability to organize your notes in a secure platform, it syncs across all your devices, and can make ideas, photos, and clipped webpages immediately available. Clipped webpages are a browser extension that saves to the Evernote platform and preserves the page the way it was when you accessed it.
Evernote provides image previews, which can save you time as you can quickly go through various saved webpages to find the one that you seek. For audio learners, Evernote has a record feature that can be used when taking notes, so you can play material back later.
App #2: Google Drive
The Google Drive app is an important tool for students as well. It can be used as free cloud storage and can be used to save and send large files. Its ability to retain large files is particularly beneficial when a large team project needs to be accessed across various devices for collaboration with your classmates.
App #3: Mendeley
Mendeley is another good app for college students. It acts as a PDF reader and enables you to annotate and highlight PDFs, which is very helpful when you’re studying.
Also, Mendeley syncs between devices and has a large online library. It can even generate references and bibliographies.
App #4: Grammarly Keyboard
Another helpful app is Grammarly Keyboard. This app can be used as a quick and efficient way to proofread assignments.
Grammarly, a related software tool, provides real-time writing feedback that can be used to strengthen your papers. It can be used as a spelling and grammar checker, offers vocabulary enhancements, and can assist you in finding synonyms. Other beneficial features of Grammarly include providing suggestions for strengthening sentence structure and cloud-based document management.
App #5: RescueTime
In terms of time management, RescueTime offers a good solution for college students. RescueTime is available in a mobile version for iOS and Android devices, as well as a desktop version.
RescueTime has automatic time tracking and distraction blocking software, and it will help you identify what tasks are stealing your time by sending a weekly report. In addition, RescueTime helps you to avoid becoming overwhelmed with tasks.
App #6: Focus Keeper
For students who struggle with procrastination, the app Focus Keeper may be helpful. This software is available for iOS and Android devices, as well as in a desktop version.
Focus Keeper helps people who tend to procrastinate or feel overwhelmed with their daily responsibilities by helping you focus on one task in 25-minute chunks of time. Daily goals are created within the app.
Apps Help You with Motivation, Time Management and Stress Relief
It is important to take advantage of all of the available technology and apps to help you with your education goals. Using apps is a good way to remain motivated, consistently remain on track and avoid the feeling of being overwhelmed.
About the Author
Dr. Jarrod Sadulski is an associate professor at American Public University. He has engaged in speaking engagements in the United States and Central America on the topic of human trafficking. Most recently, Jarrod presented at the International Human Trafficking Conference in September of 2020, and he has become a podcaster. His expertise includes infrastructure security, maritime security, homeland security contraband interdiction and intelligence gathering. Jarrod was selected as the Coast Guard’s Reserve McShan Inspirational Leadership Award recipient for 2019.