Don’t underestimate the power of this tiny little app. Such is its influence on me, this is the second time I’ve written about it. For those of us whose willpower needs just a little help at times, Pomodoro is a timer which encourages you to have a good go at your work for 25 minutes, rewarding you with a break afterwards. It’s surprisingly good for keeping you focused. There are other apps which do a similar thing at the same time as blocking your access to certain web-based distractions, but we think the simple little Pomodoro is good enough.
Now this is just a bifty bit of stuff for your devices. Of course, you could just take a regular photo of something that you need to remember, or a document that your classmate has and you’ve managed to throw away – after all, most phone cameras take bedsheet-sized photos these days. With Camscanner though, you can scan multi-page documents, you can turn the scans into PDFs, you can annotate the scans … you can really do all kinds of things with them. It is useful; it is good.
- vBookz PDF Voice Reader / Voice Aloud Reader
Now these are two similar apps; vBookz for iOS and Voice Aloud Reader for Android. They’re especially good for those negotiating university studies with dyslexia, but there’s no reason why everyone wouldn’t benefit from these. Both apps use text-to-speech software to read electronic documents to you, including PDFs and online articles. If you struggle with reading dense text or if you have so much reading to do you need to get through it whilst doing the housework or the grocery shopping, you can have it all read to you. The Android app is free whereas whilst you can download vBookz for free, you then have to pay when it comes to installing a language. It’s a pretty nominal figure though; if you’ll benefit from this kind of app, it’s a small price.
Trello is a fantastic collaborative app; if you’re set group tasks or simply want the support of a group of classmates to get through your studies, set up a shared space on Trello and keep your ideas together. Away from collaboration, it works as a great to-do list as well to keep yourself on track.
Studyblue is a great little study app, and it’s powered by user content so will only get better, it seems. You can add notes and store them as flashcards, leaving you with a great resource for revision when exam time rolls around. You can share your flashcards and find those others have used on the same subject. Studyblue can then use your notes and flashcards to generate quizzes and tests for you so it’s fantastic for anyone who needs to get vocabulary, dates, names or other facts imprinted into the brain.
Do you have any more apps that you use to help with your studies? We’d love to hear about them.