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UCF and College Studying Apps
Remember when you were in college and everything was easily accessible via an app on your phone? No? Well, me either. Our kids, however, do live in this world and there are literally apps that provide things like food delivery, tutoring services, how to create a budget or the perfect bibliography. Below is a list of the ones I thought most useful. Forgive me if it is a little too long, but truly there is something for everything and it was hard to narrow down.
UCF and College Studying Apps
UCFMobile: gives students access to UCF resources, including campus maps, Web courses, Knights Mail, the library, dining, shuttle service and more. You can now handle Knights Cash and add small gift cards to Knights Cash.
LiveSafe, because the first thing on my list is always my child’s safety. With LiveSafe, students can report a problem silently via text, attaching pictures, video and audio files if possible, even anonymously. It sort of empowers students to prevent assaults before they get out of hand. The feature called “SafeWalk” enables a GPS to help friends and family keep a digital eye on their whereabouts and an icon that allows them to notify campus officials and local police about any misgivings they may have about a situation.
Quizlet – My kids actually used this in high school too, but the good news is this great study tool is still useful. Quizlet is a free study app that allows the user to take other people’s quizzes or create their own. A user can create multiple choice, matching, true/false, and open-ended questions and use these in various ways, such as flashcards and games. Students can share their “study sets” with others in their class and even encourage a professor to create one. Brainscape is another, similar, study tool, but this one even has pre-made flashcards on thousands of subjects. Both are free.
Evernote – is a free app that takes note-taking to the next level. Students can brainstorm ideas, make to-do lists, take pictures of pages and sketches, organize everything into a notebook format, and share with others or collaborate as a group. The app even has the ability to search handwritten content, so finding your past notes is easy.
iHomework 2 – If your student is really organized then skip this one, but I know a few that could definitely benefit from it. This free app can keep track of their assignments, deadlines, and tasks, and plan them out over a certain time period so they’re not left cramming at the last minute.
OneClass – this app includes an extensive library of study guides, lecture notes and video tutorials created by top students. Various pricing plans available.
LitCharts – is great for English majors. I wish they had this when I was in school. This free app helps understand literature. Find reviews, summaries, themes, and quotes for hundreds of titles without any in-app ads. Think of it as a portable Cliff Notes.
Canvas – Just like the website, students can instantly access their Canvas courses for free without having to lug around a laptop to keep up with your homework. You can see your grades, submit assignments, send and receive messages, view content, and modules, watch videos, take quizzes, and more.
Easybib – is an online citation generator. At some point, every student will have to write a paper that requires citations and after an all-nighter, remembering how to do that properly can be difficult. This app requires them to simply plug in the information and it creates the document of works cited. It’s that easy, but proofreading is still recommended. PS. If they have the physical copy of the textbook, they can just scan its ISBN and the app will create a citation that way.
Chegg – Highly recommended. Oftentimes you can rent a book for more than half the price that a bookstore is renting it out. Students can rent, buy and sell their books. They also offer assistance with completing homework and gives access to live tutors, at a cost.
Mathway – This app is great for college math. It guides students step-by-step to get the solution or check your work to see if it matches up to theirs.
Although I would never have used it, my son, an economics and business major, could. RealCalc Scientific Calculator means students don’t have to lug around that fancy scientific calculator because this free app allows them to complete all of their computing right from their mobile device.
And while we’re on the subject of computations, Wolfram/Alpha is actually a fancy search engine that can answer questions, perform computations, conduct analysis, and prepare reports. You can get help with complicated algebra and calculus equations or find chemistry, engineering, or physics formulas. This app is $2.99.
GroupMe – At some point in their college career they will have to participate in a group project, which means the fate of their grade depends on working together. While GroupMe can’t force the group slacker, should there be one, to pull their fair share; it can facilitate easier communication. It works like a group chat, but, because you don’t have to meet up anywhere, everyone in the group saves time and money by making plans and discussing problems on their phones.
Offtime – This app costs $2.99 and is worth it if you’re looking to disconnect and avoid distractions in order to focus on homework, or studying. It blocks websites, apps, text messages, phone calls and other notifications for a set period of time so you don’t get off topic.
OneDrive – A Microsoft app that allows students to get and share documents, photos and other files from your Android device, computer (PC or Mac). Allows you to open and save files in Office apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote)
Slader – Provides step-by-step solutions to questions from the most popular textbooks for math, science, Spanish, history, economics and more. Free but they do offer a pro subscription for $1.99.
CamScanner – as its name implies, this allows you to scan docs and save it as .jpeg or PDF. Great if you need to email or fax an important document. You could also then upload it through UCF Mobile and turn in your assignment. Sync with your other devices.
Magoosh– GRE prep app- word of the idea etc
Word of the Day– builds vocabulary. I like this one too.
BenchPrep – GMAT, GRE and LSAT preparation
Couch to 5k – helps you train to run a 5k. I actually used this once. It works!
Restaurants & Entertainment
Zupp (formerly Party Tutor) – My daughter uses this one often. It allows students to explore local specials and deals for nearby restaurants, apartments, bars, and local businesses.
Pocket Points – I love this one. It literally incentivizes students to keep their phones out of sight during class. They just open the app, lock their phone and earn points for the time it is off. Later they can trade the points for discounts at certain restaurants (ie: Muscle Maker Grill, Pita Pit, Dominoes) and local and online businesses (FSU Bookstore, Sperry). There is even Double Point Tuesday (which is great since my daughter has three classes on Tuesdays.)
Insomnia Cookies – As though being able to order and have cookies delivered until 3 am is not enough; they can also earn loyalty points when they order through the app. (even if they plan to pick the cookies up). The only glitch is that occasionally they may be short drivers for delivery. Check first if delivery is what you had in mind.
UConnection – A food and drink app with exclusive deals, daily specials and more from restaurants and bars
UberEATS too, so they don’t have to stop studying to go pick up dinner. UberEATS brings the food directly to them
EatStreet – online and mobile food ordering and delivery service provider
DoorDash – This is the same concept as UberEats. They have an easy app that guides you through your order. They have also launched Project Dash. This initiative helps tackle food waste and hunger in the local communities that they serve.
GrubHub – Simply browse menus, pick what you want, and submit your order. Local suggestions are great and most deliveries are around $3. They run specials if you sign up for their emails, so get that setup.
For music, many students recommend Spotify and Pandora.
And when you need coffee, download Dunkin Donuts or Starbucks to pay for your purchase and earn rewards.
Money, Finances & Getting Around
Venmo – I am mentioning this because I think it is so easy to use, but your students probably have it already. My kids are the ones that introduced me to it. Venmo allows students to pay each other back for anything their friends may have paid for them; their share of the electric bill, half the groceries, half the Uber ride…and so on.
Lime – If you don’t own a bike or electric scooter, you may want to consider downloading this app. This is new to UCF and is a bike-share program. The bikes have GPS and cell-signal capabilities so students can find available bikes via the app. Register your Knights email and it is only .50cents per bike ride.
Come to think of it, your students should also have the Uber app (and an account) so they never get stuck walking home late at night alone.
Lyft which works the same way as Uber. They have a partnership with UCF. Just register your UCF email and you receive discounted rides.
Mint – My son is a big fan of this one. Managing money while in college can be a struggle. Mint is a budgeting app that helps students keep track of their finances, as well as help them understand where they can make some budget cuts of their own.
Dosh – is a smartphone app that gives you cash back every time you make a purchase at participating outlets using your credit card. It automatically sends a small percentage of cash back without coupons, scanning of receipts, or promo codes.
Health, Wellness & Fitness
Headspace – Maybe this should have been the first one I wrote about. I use this one too because everyone deserves a mental break. For students who want to improve their mental health, not just maintain it, the Headspace app is the perfect place to start. It acts like a personal trainer for meditation, taking just ten minutes a day to guide your brain toward developing meditation muscle-memory. They offer a ten-day trial. If nothing else, the app is a daily reminder that for ten minutes a day, we all should calm down, breathe, dislocate from any stresses and surroundings, and try to focus on how we feeling on a deeper level. (Note: I included parents here too, because, well, the world would be a better place if we all did this.)
MyFitnessPal – Tracks diet and exercise to determine optimal caloric intake and nutrients for the users’ goals. Calorie charts, nutrition facts, exercise and more. Sponsored by UnderArmour.
Calm – a great source to learn to meditate, techniques for sleep and stress reduction. (There is presently a Groupon for a discount on this app.)
It’s a wonder we ever made it through school without some of these. There are even more; fitness apps, language translators and so on, but at the risk of overwhelming you (scroll back to Headspace if I have); I tried to keep my list to only my favorites.