Updated on 3/18/2021
It would be awesome if we can finish everything we need to, fast and efficiently. But life gets in the way and we are left behind on the stuff that matters most.
As a result?
Frustration, disorganization, and near loss of sanity.
Submitting assignments on time, acing your tests and participating in the necessities of life can be a breeze if we take advantage of the online tools for college students available to us, and mostly for free.
Today, we delve into 30 tools and resources that will help you complete your everyday college studies necessities in one way or the other. Although the tools listed here are free, you can choose to upgrade to a premium version to get the most out of them.
With this online tools for college learners, you will:
- Save time.
- Boost your productivity.
- Organize and keep everything under control, and
- Find prospective clients/employers.
List your important tasks and set up reminders.
We cannot completely rely on our minds to remind us of what matters most now or in the next few days. We need some help to write down tasks that need to be taken care of and set up alerts to remind us when to execute them.
These three tools will help you do that at no extra cost for you.
1) Google Keep.
This is my all-time favorite tool when it comes to writing tasks down and scheduling reminders. A product of Google, Keep will help you take notes, lists, and classify them as tags for easy retrieval. You can color coordinate your notes to differentiate them and pin the most important notes to the front.
Here’s a short keep note from my account.
From taking class notes, idea pop-ups, important links with rich previews, Google Keep is a powerful tool that will enable you to set up customized reminders.
For those who are wondering why I was researching twins, It was for a freelance writing gig.
You can use it to write down your upcoming projects, assignments, or the information that you’ll need to complete a project. Plus, you can set up collaborators on a certain task as long as they also use Google keep.
Google keep is a great online tool for college students that need to regularly take notes and record ideas.
2) Google Tasks.
Simple and easy to use, Google tasks is a tool that’ll help you capture tasks quickly and on the go. You can have a subtask option below each task and include more details as needed. Google task allows you to sync with all devices you own.
Another important feature of Google task is that you can manage the tasks captured on Gmail and calendar straight from your phone. Although similar to Google keep, task has lesser functionalities and features.
As its creative name suggests, Todoist is a simple tool for taking all your to-do lists. Todoist can help you build lasting habits by creating recurring habits.
This is what I mean: Maybe you want to be studying for an hour every Monday at 2.00 pm. You can create this as a project on Todoist and set the same recurring date to build consistent study habits. You will receive an alert every Monday at 2.00 pm reminding you to study.
It also has a ‘prioritize a task’ feature and integration with tools like Gmail, Google calendars, and Amazon Alexa.
Track your progress with the Todoist personalized productivity trend.
Back up important files and assignments using this online tools and resources.
With the digital age upon us, it’s impossible to lack important files and other course work materials. Nothing sucks as much as losing an assignment you’ve been working for hours on end just because you did not back it up.
There are great backup software that you can use for free.
4) Google Drive
I use Google Drive all the time. Because it has a simple to use interface, a lot of usable storage space and integrations that are helpful and provide more functionality.
The free Google Drive version has up to 15 GB storage space for your files. You can upload docs, images, videos, and files from your laptop or pc to Google drive. 15 GB is more than enough space to back up your school files, test papers, and assignments.
Google Drive has an option to save the files offline for quick access as well as an option to sync all your devices. You can start using Google drive immediately if you have an active Gmail account. (There’s an option to save files directly from your email).
If you don’t want to spend hours while searching a particular file from your massive backups, organize them in folders. It also makes sharing files with friends easy peasy.
I call this one a limited alternative to Google Drive. It gives you 2 GB storage space and only 3 devices syncing in its free plan. Unless you have used up your free 15 GB free space from Google drive, Drop box’s free version is not worth much. The paid version has more features.
As a cloud-based backup option, Box allows you up to 10 GB space for free. As with Google drive, you can share, edit, and upload folders to Box. Plus, you can integrate it with Box notes and share ideas and discussions with people. Box seamlessly integrates with other 3rd party apps for more functionality.
Plan and collaborate on Group Assignments
Working on assignments in a group setting can be hectic. Everyone has their schedule and more ‘important things’ that they want to work on.
Planning and collaboration tools will not only save you time but also the frustrations of your group members claiming that they are not aware of what they should be working on.
These three online tools will smoke that sick excuse.
7) Google Docs.
In most cases, you have to submit group assignments as one document, well-formatted and edited. Google docs is an almost perfect tool to work on your group document. With its collaboration and sharing features, multiple people can view, edit, and comment on the same document.
If you have an audio recording of lecturers’ notes, let Google Drive’s voice typing tool to do the transcribing for you. And wallah, ready made notes.
Working on one document will ensure that your assignment paper is uniformly formatted and edited. And the best part, all your change are saved as you make them.
I love Trello’s creative and colorful dashboard. It has kanban like boards where you can list your projects. You can create lists and cards for the sub-projects while inputting checklists and additional information that will help you detail a project.
It allows up to 10 team boards in the free plan. This is more than enough for a simple group/assignment project. The labels for each project can be color-coded for simple distinguishing.
So how can this help as a collaboration tool?
Simply said, team members (Groups in the case) can have one board where they outline and detail their projects, track the progress, make necessary changes, and even leave comments.
If you’re the visual kind, you’ll love Trello’s interface. Try it out when you have a large project that needs lots of planning and evaluation.
And yes. I struggle with procrastination too even while working on tasks I love, such as fictional writing.(The board description says it all)
That aside, Trello’s a great collaboration tool that makes working in a group much easier.
Want to chat, video, and voice call with team members while working on a project?
Try Slack. It’ll enable you to share files from dropbox, assign tasks to each group member, comment on the progress, and integrate with other apps. Everyone will know what they have to do and when to do it.
Slack’s better at communication while Trello excels at Project planning.
Brush up your Written Assignments.
How well you do your assignments and course work will determine the grade on your papers and the final degree you’ll get.
With these online tools for college students, you can check for plagiarism, correct your grammar and spelling as well as improve the tone of our voice.
10) Paper rater
This hustle free online tool does not require that you sign up or log in to use. You can check for plagiarism, grammar, and vocabulary and receive an estimated grade on your paper. Paper rater’s free plan allows you to check 5 pages per submission and 10 plagiarism checks per month.
11) My assignment help
You can check an unlimited length of assignment for plagiarism on my assignment help. It gives you authentic reports and analysis of errors exhibited in your assignments.
Have a large file?
You can upload it directly to the website and check for plagiarism at a go.
A favorite among many, Grammarly is a robust grammar and spell checker. If you want to get the most out of Grammarly, you should set the goals of your document according to the intent, audience, and style of your writing.
Grammarly does not just check your grammar and spelling, it also tells you the reason why you are wrong.
There’s a premium but quite an expensive plan that you can utilize if you have the budget. But, the free version has most of what you need for term papers and other course work.
13) Pro writing aid
This is a more report in-depth alternative to Grammarly. With the free version, you can check grammar and spelling mistakes, receive writing reports, and a summary of issues that crop up in your writing.
The downside? You’re limited to only 5oo words per analysis.
14) Hemingway Editor
The Hemingway Editor is a free online tool that you should use to check for excessive passive voice use and difficult writing in your schoolwork. It uses different colors to show where a problem lies and makes suggestions of how or why you need to correct it.
Yellow- Lengthy sentences.
Red- Confusing and difficult to read sentences.
Blue- weak words that writing could do without.
Green- passive voice. Change the text into an active voice.
Academic research and citations made easier.
Finding the correct source, referencing, and citing using the right format is grueling work for any college student. It’s incredibly time-consuming and frustrating especially when you can’t seem to find the right source.
The 5 online tools and resources for colleges listed below will make research and citation a breeze.
Online Research databases.
As a multidisciplinary, open-access directory, you will find vast publications that you can use to back whatever you write in your assignments.
It’s free and you do not have to take any cash from your wallet to pay for the peer-reviewed research articles.
Filtering through the results is made easier by using the author, publication year, language, and discipline tags to find the information you want.
This directory aggregates open access journals that you can base your term papers and essays. It covers a wide range of disciplines like law, science, tech, medicine, and humanities. Simply search by title or discipline and have your free results in minutes.
17) Directory of Open Access Journal.
DOAJ supplies you with important, high-quality peer-reviewed journals that will help in your reference. It boasts of more than 9000 journals that can come in handy when doing your research. And, it’s all for free. No cash spending on your side.
Free online Citation tools for college assignments.
You may have the research but wrongly cite an article or publication. A citation generator reduces the error margin by citing all the sources used in your article, as long as they can be found on the internet.
18) Cite this for me
As the name suggests, this generator generates citations from different sources according to your needed style. So how do you go about it?
- Choose your source.
- Enter the required info to retrieve the reference. It could be a URL, ISBN, or title of a publication.
- Click cite and copy the results into your bibliography.
- Rinse and repeat until you’ve cited all your sources.
19) My Bib.
Similar to cite this for me, my bib allows you to cite articles of any form including websites and videos. You can choose from APA, MLA, Chicago, and Harvard citation styles.
Use identifies like authors, titles, and publication dates to quickly retrieve your sources.
SO far so good. I hope that you’ve found one online tool that’ll help you big time. If not, there are more important ones down here.
Concentrate on what matters now.
The art of concentration is hard to learn. Harder when we have impeccably addictive distractions like social media apps.
Ironically, an online tool can help you reduce distractions while studying and be more productive.
20) Help me focus
If you want to concentrate fully on what you are working on, you may need to block the apps that distract you. Especially when you are studying on your phone or laptop.
With the Help me focus app, you can block Facebook, Instagram, Netflix, and Youtube. To surge self- control, the app will give you motivation quotes every time you try to use the restricted apps.
Set your own rules for each app use and focus on what you should be working on. Every time you violate a rule you had set, you’ll receive a notification reminding you to stay on course.
Applocker helps you know how often and the amount of time you spend on an app plus the amount of time you have left before your app use ends.
Flipd takes a more aggressive approach when it comes to blocking your phone. You can lock your phone for a period and until it elapses, you can’t restart it.
If you need a gentler way to stay on track, try this next tool.
Pause is a chrome extension that gently helps you stay focused. This is how it works.
- Set a list of your most distracting websites.
- Each time you try to access the website, a calming green-colored screen appears on your screen reminding you to reconsider.
- How does this keep you on track? The five-second green screen lets you pause and reassess your decision of welcoming distractions.
24) Space (Formerly Break free)
This app will help you manage and track your screen time, understand the type of phone user you are, and receive notifications of excessive use by blocking your apps.
Moment tells you how much time you are spending on your phone and which apps you are using most. This way, you can readjust, overcome procrastination, and get back on track.
Curate information that’ll save time later.
You saw it somewhere. You just don’t remember where your bookmark listing dating back to 2012 can be found. This makes it even harder to retrieve information
Did you know that you can store all the information you regularly use in one place?
In return, you’ll save time, evade frustration, and quickly complete your tasks.
Create a swipe file
Swipe files are known to be used mostly by copywriters and content strategists. They normally create swipe files for great ads, email subject lines, blog posts, and headline ideas.
But you can utilize this idea and make the most of it. You can create swipe files as a folder on your desktop or use existing online tools and resources for college that have more features.
26) Google Sheets.
Sheets have the same concept as Microsoft excel. Each cell from a sheet can have a basic headline like; books on a certain topic, references that could help you, authors that you can cite, a web article that resonates with a topic you are studying, or facts and statistics that could back up your academic articles.
Get creative. You can include anything and everything that would prove important later on. And you don’t have to worry about losing them, your swipe file is saved as you make the changes.
As a read it later bookmarker. You can curate information from publications, apps, pages, articles, and videos from anywhere on the web.
You will then read them later or have pocket read it out to you in a distraction-free format. Pocket enables you to sync all your devices and save items offline.
Upgrading to the premium version will allow you to search through your articles through the tags you assign.
OnlineTools for college undergraduates to save portfolios.
Why do you need a portfolio?
- Show your expertise and skills.
- Your qualifications
- Education and certifications.
Although you may not have much experience working in a company, as a college student, a portfolio will show that you are indeed skilled and ready for a particular job.
Plus, you could add references from notable people and increase your chances of getting a job or a short contract.
Here are two free online tools you could build your portfolio on.
Your portfolio can be hosted on a website like WordPress.com. Although you have to use a WordPress subdomain, it can be a good starting point when it comes to showcasing your portfolio. You should list and show the projects that you have worked on, the experience you have garnered, and some industry tools you have mastered.
As with WordPress, Wix offers a limited free plan. Wix is user friendly to start with and you’ll be having your portfolio in no time.
These two are good for beginners who don’t have a budget, but if you want more functionality and customization, opt for a self-hosted WordPress and your own domain name. I loved this free guide from CollegeInfoGeek.
Best Online tools for college students to connect with potential employers and business partners.
Opportunities go to those who are searching and well prepared for them. And the last place you could think of getting a job or getting a potential investor for a business is social media. SM has a lot of opportunities that are not sought after.
These are the top 4 social media apps where you can get jobs/partnerships.
LinkedIn has more than 40 million recent graduates and students on their platform. Want to find the top entrepreneurs and business people from around the globe? Search them on LinkedIn and you are sure to find them.
All you need to get started is a free account, optimize it for your industry niche, and get active.
LinkedIn offers you a stage to showcase your education levels, skills, and endorsements (Referrals for your top-rated skills)
Recently, they introduced a take a quiz option to determine your skills level. This is then displayed on your profile. To get noticed on linked in, you need to post relevant articles, build connections, and leverage on them.
You can use it to find mentors in your niche who would likely hold your hand and show you the ropes in an industry.
Now, 95% of recruiters are using LinkedIn making it the perfect place to build your resume and brand.
31) Facebook Groups.
Bloggers have known the secrets of being active in Facebook groups. And you too can leverage this powerful and under-utilized platform.
First, you need to optimize your profile as a professional and not a desperate looking for work guy. Then join niche relevant groups, contribute and form more connections.
Let people know that you have relevant skills that could help their businesses and organizations. Prove yourself indispensable by displaying your best work and skills.
And if you want to gain skills for a particular job, use Facebook to find organizations that want interns and volunteers.
For creatives, this is the tool for you. By leveraging on the visual stand out design and posting elements of Instagram, you can showcase your creative portfolios, use relevant and trending hashtags to gain more clients, and find potential employees. Instagram is great for web designers, food industry students, and graphic design students.
With over 2 billion users, Youtube is used by individuals and businesses alike. For students in the video industry, teaching careers, and designing, Youtube offers a platform for you to show your skills in video form and attract employers and clients.
It’s all about great quality videos, SEO optimization, and targeting the right group. And since 90% of users find products and services through youtube, it would be a great platform to advertise your platform.
See, it’s simple to save time and your sanity as well if only you utilize this amazingly helpful online tools for college that we just went over.
Which tool, among these do you regularly use, and which ones have you discovered today?
Let me know.
You rock Hinga,this is absolutely awesome girl
Hae Donna, thank you for the comment.
I hope that one of the 30 tools will make a huge differences for you.
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