Top 4 Life Changing Apps You Need as a College Student (With Demos)
Hey everyone! I was just using each of these apps today to study for my midterms, and I figured I’d share the wealth. I got each of these apps from the Apple App Store, and use them seamlessly across my Apple devices. I hope each of them change your midterm weeks for the better! (This is post is kind of long but I made it long to cover what I think are the coolest/most useful things about these apps)
App #1: Notability
Yah, yah. You’ve heard of this one before. I’m here to show you some reasons for that.
1. Annotating and Combining All of the Powerpoints and PDF’s of Your Wildest Dreams
Holy crap is this thing good at converting powerpoints and PDFs. The transition is undetectable. Furthermore, if your lecture material was split up into 2 powerpoints that your professor posted, or multiple topics are covered in one powerpoint that you want to separate, you can either combine them into one note, or only import selected slides into separate notes. Once you do that, you can draw, highlight, add photos and additional typed text…pretty much anything extra you’d need is at your fingertips.
Demo: Importing PDFS:
Here I’m taking a random web page PDF from organicchem.org about chair conformers, tapping once on it, and copying it to the notability app.
You literally just tap a couple times and it’s done for you. You can add the PDF to a new note, an old note, or even take specific pages of the PDF/powerpoint and place only the ones you want into a new or existing note. It’s almost too easy to be true.
2. You Can Actually Write Neatly
If you’re anything like me, it bothers you how your handwriting suddenly looks messy when you write on tablets. Well, notability handles that for you.
Demo: Writing and Editing Written Text:
Here I’m writing a huge note of what I want to remember with the pencil tool. I picked a red color from the huge color selection, and a rather thin pencil line because it’s only a small side-note. Of course you can customize your writing to fit what is easiest for you to read and study from. What happens in the second and third pictures is the cool part:
You can use the scissors tool to put a circle around what you just wrote, and then pinch and rotate the text to change its size and orientation, as well as drag your finger to move it to where you want your note to go. This way you can write super neatly and just do the moving around afterwords, making sure you can see your text and are comfortable with the way it appears. You can also re-select it to make it bigger again if you change your mind.
3. You Can Record and Embed Your Lectures Into Your Notes, While You’re Writing Original Notes OR Annotating Existing Ones
You can do them at the same time. You don’t have to think about inserting a recording after the fact, or mixing up small recordings and meshing them into one document. Notability sorts your audio recordings and fixes them up pretty for you, and just starts recording as soon as you hit the speaker button. Then you can keep annotating what Dr. So-and-So is saying without worrying about your recording being in the right place.
Demo: Recording While Note-Taking:
After you’ve recorded, you can click the speaker button again to edit the recording’s volume, sort multiple recordings you’ve taken as well as name them. Move the recordings from note to note, etc.
App #2: Flashcard Hero
Known colloquially as: “How I’m Passing My Anatomy Lab”
Listen here y’all if you wanna make flashcards fast as fuck and learn them the day of your practical, Flashcard Hero is how.
General Overview of Best Features:
The way I predominantly use this app is by furiously making and organizing my flashcards into millions of sections and subsections on my computer, so that everything is findable and easy to access within my flashcard deck. Then I move them via iCloud over to my phone and tablet to study them on the go.
You can put pictures, videos, PDF pages, anything on the front or back of your flashcard, and just as much as you want on the back as well. When you study, you can choose if you want the front or back to show up first, or an alternation of the two if you prefer. There is no length limit on what you can place on a particular card.
While you’re studying, the app gives you options of clicking “Easy, Unsure, or Hard” on the card you’re reviewing, so that it will pop up with the ones you’re unsure/really clueless about more often. This saves my actual ass I can’t recommend it enough. It has improved my ability to memorize tons of material far more quickly and efficiently.
Demo: The General Interface of Flashcard Hero:
You can see some of the features I’ve talked about. If you want to know even more of the features, try downloading the app and checking out the “Tutorial” deck it includes on the main menu!
App #3: LiquidText
This is another insanely useful method of PDF annotation. It is like nothing I’ve ever seen before, and is really good for people who enjoy mind-mapping and comprehensively organizing their ideas while reading!
Best Feature: Organizing Important Bits of Text:
Okay prepare to be very happy about this. You can literally highlight a section of a PDF, drag it to the side of your screen, and poof. Your highlighted bit is saved for you to click on and easily access later. You can even link your highlighted bits, no matter how far apart they are within the document, to help connect and organize your thoughts. And wait until you see Highlightview, where you can pinch the document so that all of your highlighted portions come together labelled with page numbers. Too satisfying okay, too satisfying:
If you’re reading something really quickly before class, and you want to easily access interesting portions of a long text during a class discussion, this app will save your life and save you pain in the long run.
App #4: MyScript Calculator
Just watch the demo of this one and prepare to take a huge sigh of relief and awe and happiness. It actually works and doesn’t confuse what you’re writing, and will do difficult/complex computation. By changing around the settings to fit the discipline of math you’re doing, this app can save you some annoying typing into calculators and can help you visualize large calculations at a glance.
Best Features: Blowing my tiny, bad at fast-math mind
Demo: General Interface of MyScript Calculator
Just. Yes. Yes good.
Anyway, I hope you guys enjoyed this/found at least one of these useful! Merry midterms!