My generation of students has established the personal device trend, utilizing smartphones, tablets, and laptops in nearly all of our everyday tasks and interactions—both inside the classroom and out. With the number of apps expanding exponentially every day, I’ve surveyed a number of my high school friends and their siblings to compile a list of our top ten app picks for students:
- Epic! ($7.99/month; FREE educator access)
Catered to K–5 students, Epic! offers a library of over 25,000 of the best books for kids, instantly accessible at any time and on any device. By downloading this app on their personal devices, students will always have a book at their fingertips. Monthly membership with unlimited access to Epic!’s library costs less than buying a single book, and students can gain free access through their teachers and librarians.
- Trello (FREE)
Group projects are one of the most rewarding, yet frustrating, learning experiences. It can sometimes seem impossible to delegate tasks to group members while simultaneously managing due dates and project timelines. With Trello, you can accomplish your group project goals using boards, lists, and cards to assign duties to each group member, which they can mark as completed as you progress in your group work. Download this free app to maximize your productivity when working on collaborative projects.
- Duolingo (FREE)
If you have ever tried to learn a new language, you know that repetition and continuity are two of the most important factors in successfully becoming fluent. For those looking to learn a new language, Duolingo will start you with the basics and work you up to basic fluency through repetitive quizzes and exercises. For current language learners, Duolingo fills the gaps between language classes—like summer and winter break—so you can maintain continuity and spend less time on review at the beginning of each semester.
- Quizlet (FREE)
Quizlet is a tried-and-true study method for students at any level. This app is a simple and effective way to create sets of study info, which you can review in several different ways—including flashcards, matching, or a fast-paced game called Gravity. Recently, Quizlet introduced a new feature called Quizlet Learn, which aims to kickstart your studying with an adaptive plan that charts your progress, helps you stay motivated with encouraging checkpoints, and keeps you on track with helpful study reminders.
- Hopscotch (FREE)
The new “foreign language,” coding is the communication of the future; however, it can be overwhelming to jump into coding with no background in the subject. Hopscotch aims to give you some experience with coding, allowing you to experiment with their block-based language and giving you the confidence to branch out to more complex languages like Java and Python. Download this free app if you’re looking to explore the world of coding on your personal device without having to download complex applications or learn difficult syntax.
- Mathway (FREE)
Mathway is simply an online mathematical processor that solves math problems from basic algebra to advanced calculus. The best way to use this as a student is to check practice problems that you are unsure about, but aren’t able to ask your teacher about at that moment. This way, you can be sure that you’re not making the same mistakes over and over as you work through practice and homework problems in preparation for an exam.
- 30/30 (FREE)
An extreme productivity manager, 30/30 allows you to make a task list with timed work and break periods to keep you on track with your homework and studying. Especially towards the end of the semester, it can be so overwhelming to finish homework, work on projects, and study for final exams. Using 30/30 can help keep your anxiety down by letting you limit the time you work on each assignment, and giving you the ability to take planned breaks between tasks.
- Blackboard Mobile Learn (FREE with school’s subscription to Blackboard)
Although this app is only useful to students at schools that subscribe to Blackboard’s LMS, it is extremely useful to have on your portable devices. By downloading this app, you get immediate access to all of your class assignments, grades, and files on the go, making it possible to be productive wherever you are.
- EasyBib (FREE)
Although you are able to use almost any information you like for school projects, you always have to cite your sources to avoid plagiarism. Unless you’re learning the details of making a citation—in which case you should cite your sources by hand—EasyBib is a simple way to make your works cited page. Type in the individual pieces of information about your source, and EasyBib puts it into any format you need.
WolframAlpha is the search engine that bests all search engines. This massive computational processor takes your input and gives you every possible bit of information it thinks you may find useful as an answer. Rather than offering you links like other search engines, WolframAlpha gives you the answer directly, making it an efficient way to answer your questions. Best of all, this app can answer nearly any question or input you put into it, from math problems to scientific equations.
Apps are the key to taking control of your productivity and schoolwork. As a student, I have found the use of apps has helped to facilitate my success in the classroom. By downloading these apps to your personal device, you always have immediate access to a wide variety of educational tools that will help you progress in your schoolwork and be a successful student.