18 Apps that Every College Student Needs

Note Taking Apps

Note taking in college is something that can be really important & is a skill that everyone should probably have. Although there are more fill in the blank notes than I expected in college, I still needed some good habits when it came to note taking. Here are some of the best note taking apps that I used during school.

1. Pages

If you have a MacBook, iPad, or other Apple product, this is one of the easiest ways to go. The notes will sync to all of your devices, there are pre made note taking layouts to help you get started, and it is pretty simple to keep organized. The only down fall to pages is that you cannot pull these notes up on any device that is not an Apple device without significant extra work.

2. Google Drive & Apps

This is a classic platform that I have been using since I was in high school. One of the great things about google drive is that it will save automatically (this means no lost research papers!!).

Another thing that I like is that you can color coordinate your folders on your drive to make it more visually appealing to search for things.

One of the only downfalls that I have found with Google is that when you are using it on your phone, tablet, etc you need to have all of the separate apps (powerpoint, docs, sheets, etc) which can be inconvenient & take up extra space on your device. But if you are just planning on taking notes on your computer, I LOVE this option!

3. Microsoft Office & Apps

Very similarly to Google Drive, Microsoft Office can be a really great option. I enjoy that there are preset note templates that can be used (they also have them for MLA or APA style papers which is SUPER helpful as well). This platform does not submit automatically, though, which can be tough for people who are not used to saving things. Another downfall would be that it is not as visually appealing to organize & you also need to download a collection of apps on your mobile device in order to open different kinds of media.

4. Voice Memos

Here is one that you may not always think of using, but it is one of the most helpful note taking apps that I used.

Obviously this already comes on most phones (especially Apple devices), but if you do not already have one, I would download it!

This comes in handy if you are a slower note taker because you get make sure that you are getting everything that your professor says.

I would also use this on any exam review day! It is perfect to play back while you are studying as a review tool.

And special secret from me…. *voice memos are the best when you are just super tired & just do not have the motivation to take notes* Just record in the morning & listen later and take notes when you have more energy (but shhhh I do not encourage that…)

Apps to Better Yourself

I think that bettering yourself is a super important part of going to college because it is an all new place with lots of new things going on around you. That means that focusing on yourself a little bit can be exactly what you need.

5. Podcasts

Again, if you own an iPhone you already should have the Podcast App, but my guess is that most of you have probably never used it. Well you should. I think that this is the best. I listen to podcasts while I get ready in the morning, while I walk to class, or just when I am bored. It is a great thing to multitask with. For me, its like watching Netflix, but I feel like I am learning something too. Some of my favorites are Masters in Business (because it is about really interesting companies and business leaders), Girls Gotta Eat, The Happiness Lab, & RISE podcast.

6. Tile

Okay, so if you are anything like me, you tend to lose things that you shouldn’t lose. If that sounds like you, you NEED tile. This isn’t just an app, but it is perfect for people who misplace things. You can buy the tile online or at target, but you can attach it to your keys, put it in your wallet, or anything else that you shouldn’t lose. The app shows you where all of your things are & it even allows you to ring the different tiles to find your lost items.

7. GymShark

I. LOVE. GYMSHARK. You will probably hear this from me more times than you even want to, but this is my favorite workout app. I am not the type of girl to just do cardio (not that it is a bad thing at all!) because I absolutely hate running. This app gives you amazing workouts for every area of your body. There are ones with weights and ones with just body weight that are perfect for home. I never knew how to lift weights well before this app, but now I know exactly how I am improving every time that I go to the gym!

8. Sleep Booster

Although it can sometimes be minimal, sleeping is a must at college. Being in a new place for the first time can be tough for a lot of people, but sleep booster has you covered! The app includes various meditation, breathing cycles, and calming sounds to put you right to sleep. My personal favs are the Ball of Light Meditation & the Avian Forest Calming Sound. Most times, I fall asleep before the meditation is even over. It really helped me during finals week to get quality sleep, even if it wasn’t for very long.

9. LinkedIn

It may seem like I am biased about this one since I am a business major but PLEASE LISTEN! LinkedIn is not just for business majors. It is a way for people in all professions and fields to connect. I find it quite fun sometimes too because it is like social media for companies (hehe). It is a great way to start putting yourself out there, making connections, and learning ways to build your resume. If you want to connect with me on LinkedIn, you can check out how I use it & how I set up my profile!! https://www.linkedin.com/in/oliviashowers/

Money & Shopping Related Apps

10. Venmo

Alright, first thing is first. If you are going to college & do not have Venmo stop whatever you are doing right now (yes I am serious) & go download this app. This is the best thing to have as a student. There are plenty of times that you go places with friends & have to split the cost. It is 100% easier to do the math on your calculator & just press a few buttons to send the money. I use this almost every single day, for one thing or another while I am at school.

11. Cash App

Along with Venmo, I also recommend the Cash App. It is virtually the same thing as Venmo, but it doesn’t hurt to have both. Sometimes clubs, on campus organizations, or events only use Cash App, so I think that it is good to have on hand. Plus, if you use my special code, you will get $5 FOR FREE just for signing up (so you may as well just do that even if you never use the app again). https://cash.app/app/HWQCFKH & make sure to use the code HWQCFKH !!

12. Amazon

This is another thing that is necessary to have as a college student. Amazon is the perfect way to shop for things that you may have forgotten at home when you moved in, things that you realized that you need along the way, and even food. & don’t even get me started on Amazon Prime. Things just show up in 2 days or LESS. I used Amazon extremely often throughout the year. I bought decor for my room, groceries delivered right to my dorm, clothes, and sooo much more, but it is just so convenient! ALSO… you can get an Amazon Prime discount when you use your school email address!

13. Your favorite restaurant & store apps

Some of the most important things while you are a college student is saving money & finding a way to get free food. This does both.

Whenever you think about buying food or shopping, start by downloading the app for that restaurant or store. It may seem like a lot of effort, but rewards programs are the best things that will ever happen to you.

I cannot tell you how many free chipotle bowls, firehouse sub sandwiches, and coupons I have gotten just because I make sure to use rewards programs. If you are going to be going there anyways, why not save some money??

Communication Apps

14. Voxer

This is one of those apps that most people have never heard of, but I think that it is awesome. Voxer is a messaging app that was modeled after the idea of walkie talkies. For me, this is perfect because I LOVE to call people instead of text because I think that it is a lot easier, but people don’t always pick up the phone. That is why this is so convenient! You can leave little messages while you walk to class, while you are working out, or even while you are in class with the regular texting feature. You can make group chats too & it is a ton of fun

15. Zoom

Kidding & not kidding with this one. Online classes are a prevalent thing in the world we living in right now, so if you do not already have your Zoom account set up, you may as well start getting on that. I don’t personally love doing my classes over Zoom, but it can make communicating with your hometown friends fun too while you are at school. I can already imagine my weekly Zoom calls with my hometown best friends while we are all at our separate schools!

16. WhatsApp

Whatsapp is another great communication app, but especially if you end up making friends with international students, or want to study abroad in the future! Around the world, this is one of the most popular communication apps to use. You can personalize it quite a bit & make each conversation fun & interesting.

Extra Apps

17. Coursicle

This app will totally save you when it comes to course registration. Most likely, you will end up not getting the exact sections that you wanted, so download Coursicle & use it to your advantage! Basically what you can do is put in the section that you wanted based on your school & as soon as a spot opens up, the app will notify you so you can jump on it. Last semester alone, I used it to get into 3 different classes that I wanted.

18. Uber

Last but not least, we have one of the most popular college apps! Uber can be the best tool when you do not have a car on campus. We used Uber to get to the local target, restaurants that were a little further away, and a few times I took an Uber to class in the pouring rain. Uber is great, but just remember to always stay safe; check license plates & ask the driver who they are picking up before you get in the car.

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