By Victoria Maneske
Primarily virtual learning has led to many adjustments. One of which is re-structuring the form in which students plan out their schedules and keep track of assignments, projects and exams. With the new online format, courses may become muddled together and more hectic to manage. There is a plethora of planner apps made for students and teachers, but there are a select few that stand out among the rest. Here are some of the most popular, versatile and top recommended apps for students to help boost their productivity in their academic journey.
The first free app, with a 4.7 star rating in the Apple App Store and a 4.4 star rating in the Google Play store, is “My Study Life”. This app is available on iPhone, Android and on a PC with Windows 8 and above. It is a cross-platform planner that stores class information, homework lists and exam details in the cloud, syncing all information available between devices. It is also useable offline, requiring no internet connection.
It keeps track of your schedule and any overlapping events, along with warning you of any upcoming or overdue assignments. You can create tasks and organize reminder notifications for them as well. The dashboard displays upcoming classes, assignments and exams. You can input specific details about the classes, such as time, teacher and location. Teachers are also able to use it and add students on the platform.
The next app is “myHomework Student Planner”, with a 4.6 star rating in the Apple App Store and a 4.2 star rating in the Google Play store. This app is also available on iPhone, Android and PC and does not require network connectivity. It is free, but there is also an ad-free premium option for $4.99 a year. With the plan, you can choose a theme design and share assignments with others. It is rated highly by various news organizations, such as USA Today, Yahoo News, Business Insider and Mashable.
“MyHomework Student Planner” tracks dates and times for classes, assignments and exams with a color-coded schedule planner. It also supports time, block and period-based schedules. With an account, you can sync all your data to other platforms. You can also use a Facebook sign-on option and join with other accounts, such as your professors, to sync more class information and content.
Another app is “Istudiez”, which has a 4.4 star rating in the Apple App Store and a 3 star rating in the Google Play store. Like the others, it is available on iPhone, Android and PCs with Windows 7 through Windows 10. One difference is that it is also available on the Apple Watch. It is free with an option for a premium update, which has a weekly plan for 99 cents, a monthly plan for $1.99 and a yearly plan for $9.99. The premium upgrade allows for a multiplatform option, where all your data can sync to multiple devices.
With this app, students can input and manage rotating schedules and create specialized icons and color labels to distinguish courses and events. You can also add information of course details, such as instructor office hours and contact information. All past classes stay stored, so you can look back at them.
There is a special section on the app to keep on track with homework and assignments. You can customize assignments by date, course or priority and sort them from pending to completed. There are day views and week views to plan ahead, and you can add assignments and due dates to all classes, along with the option of setting alerts to remind you of upcoming assignments or exams.
You can view updates of your schedule in real time mode to keep track of time frames, and you can share your calendar with others or sync it with other calendars you may have. One unique feature of this app is that it has a GPA calculator that supports common grading scales. You input your grades and it calculates what your current grade is based on the scale.
Lastly, one productive and familiar study app with a 4.8 star rating in the Apple App Store and a 4.6 star rating on the Google Play store is “Quizlet”, where flashcards can be made virtually and flipped around for memorizing and testing one’s knowledge. The cards can also be formatted in as a multiple-choice test or a fill-in-the-blank test style as well, providing many outlets for studying. You can keep track of your scores and progression as you constantly quiz yourself to prepare for course quizzes and exams. One may also create multiple decks in multiple groups so they can be organized by subject or course.
Upgrading to “Quizlet Go”, for over $30 a year, will provide an ad-free service along with Night Theme and offline access. “Quizlet Plus”, for over $40 a year, will add in image uploading and an unlimited number of classes with more premium features on the website.
In March, “Quizlet” offered free subscriptions for teachers that were impacted by COVID-19 until June 30, 2020, giving more access to tools that could help track student engagement and progress. It was also valued at $1 billion in May as a surge of users shifted to the virtual format from in-home learning as schools were shut down. The main feature was the AI-powered tutoring platform it holds, and it may be moved to the core product in the future.
These apps are the most consistent and favored across the board, and through their cross-platform utilization and organizational patterns, they can assist in the welfare and productivity of academic life, especially within our quarantine environment and virtual transition that is staying in place for the foreseeable future.