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You could spend hours searching for the best organization apps to prepare for back to school. And let’s face it: Not all apps work for every person. If you’re a visual thinker, you may be better suited to a mind-mapping app for notes. Other learners may prefer apps that create flashcards.
We’ve whittled down this list of the best organization apps for students to help keep you organized throughout the next school year.
Best Apps for Helping You Stay Organized in College
A tried-and-true favorite, Google Calendar proves to be one of the best scheduling, meeting and collaboration apps for students. With Google Calendar, you can share your class schedules and create meetings to better coordinate group projects. You can also set reminders so you don’t miss essential tests or events.
Suppose you have a complex schedule and need separate calendars for your classes and extracurricular activities. In that case, you can set up multiple calendars that you can turn on and off to see a partial or complete view of your day-to-day schedule.
This app comes out of the popular Pomodoro Technique. Developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s, the Pomodoro Technique is a strict practice that helps you be more productive and accomplish projects in 25-minute periods.
During those 25-minute time slots, you cannot do anything other than work on the task you’ve set out to do, whether it’s writing a term paper or studying for an exam. Pomodoro, the app, includes a customizable timer, white noise and the ability to track your progress on different projects. It’s an invaluable asset for anyone balancing a full course load.
My Study Life
Sticky notes are handy for jotting down quick ideas, reminders and notes, but they don’t always travel well and can easily go missing. That’s why My Study Life is one of our top organization apps for students.
You can use this app to note everything that happens during your day, including new class projects, tests, course schedules and more. You can also schedule specific tasks and create notes and reminders as you would on a sticky note.
iHomework2 may look like any other organization app, but it has two features you won’t want to miss. First, you can look at a calendar that details when your assignments must be complete and what you need to work on each day to finish on time.
From the information you add, iHomework2 lets you know how hard a certain task will be and helps you schedule your time accordingly. The app also allows you to see which days contain which courses, along with class times, grades, information about your professors and any other details you choose to include.
Todoist is a simple, classic version of your pen-and-paper to-do list. If you’re looking for a well-designed, no-frills app to help keep you organized, Todoist includes any features you’ll need. You can add tasks and documents and set up alerts and share your information with classmates.
Apps to Use for Class and Assignments
It’s not always practical to cart around a full-size printer or scanner, you may find yourself needing one during the school year for signing and sending forms. With CamScanner, you can capture an image of any document, upload it in a variety of formats and save it for future use. You can then share the document through text, email or social media.
CamScanner also allows you to modify a document after scanning. For example, you might add a signature or edit text. Bonus? It’s free for student use.
If you like to use apps and products in the same family and are already familiar with the Adobe Suite, you may want to download AdobeScan. This app functions similarly to other Adobe products and is simple to use.
You can scan and upload any document (even smaller items like receipts) and edit it in the app. Its minimal design makes the process of scanning quick and straightforward, allowing you to continue to other priorities.
Look no further than Quizlet for an all-inclusive study tool. Quizlet is an app that helps you prepare for exams and, according to the Quizlet team, improve your test scores.
You can choose to study using traditional flashcards, which allow you to input a question on one side of a virtual card and the answer on the back. As you scroll through the cards, you can mark which ones you’d like to review again to help prioritize your study time. It’s also possible to add pictures to the flashcards and find premade sets from top users and verified institutions.
Instapaper is one of the best organization apps for minimalist design. If you’re scrolling through a new site or reading an article you’d like to refer to, Instapaper allows you to save the source to the app.
Once in the app, you can organize your saved sources in a way that works best for you, whether by topic, class or group project, and highlight or annotate important information. You can also access and read sources off-line so you never have to worry about connecting to Wi-Fi.
If looking at pages of text makes your head spin, MindMeister is a top organization app for students who are visual learners. MindMeister makes use of “mind maps” that allow you to brainstorm either by yourself or with a group. You can also build presentations and think through decision-making processes.
You can use the app to organize your class notes in a visual format and add diagrams and images to your mind maps. One of MindMeister’s features, Focus Mode, even hides extraneous buttons and pop-ups to help you stay on task and finish projects on time.
Apps to Help with Financial Planning
Outside of the classroom, one of students’ top needs is splitting bills, whether from dining out, purchasing items for projects or rent. That’s where Splitwise comes in. This handy app keeps all of your bill-splitting in one place.
Splitwise calculates who owes what and saves transaction information, so if someone is unable to pay at the moment, you can keep track of amounts owed.
Scholly’s creators set out to gather information about available scholarships in one centralized location. Instead of searching on Google, Scholly aggregates scholarships based on your criteria.
With a list of possible scholarships in hand, you can better prioritize which to apply to first to help lower the cost of tuition and out-of-pocket expenses.
Every student needs a budgeting app, and Mint is one of the best choices to date. Mint’s interface is easy to use and intuitive so you won’t have to do too much digging to use its features. After downloading Mint, you can link your banks, credit cards and any other sources to get an overview of your financial situation.
Mint also allows you to create your own budget, allowing you to track how much you’re spending, see where you might be overspending and set up financial goals for tuition, trips or big purchases.
Another budgeting app you may want to consider is PocketGuard. Some of the unique aspects of this app are its emphasis on analytics and calculations to help you see how much income you have left after expenses and how you’re saving over longer periods.
PocketGuard’s analytics apply to debt, such as student loans, and help you determine when and how to pay off your debts. PocketGuard also focuses on financial goals and even gives you tips to lower your monthly bills and stop paying for services you don’t use.
If you’ve been hearing about the importance of investing but aren’t sure where to start, Acorns is the app you need to download before heading back to school. It’s not free, but its services are well worth the small price.
Acorns uses “spare change” from your purchases to make investments. Here’s how it works: When you use a linked credit or debit card, Acorns rounds up the total of each purchase and invests that change in a portfolio of “exchange-traded funds.” The app removes any stress or complication from the investing process and is a great tool for beginner investors.