The College Student’s Productivity Guide – 27 Apps, Tools, and Resources

Having trouble staying on task? Need help with simple things like crafting a bibliography page? Not surprisingly, there are many online solutions for almost every aspect of your college life. No, there isn’t a free download that can cure your hangover from Saturday night, but there are plenty of online study aids that will get you through the rough spots. Below are 27 applications, tools, and resources that will make you a more productive college student.

Handy Tools

These tools can help you breeze through math class, enjoy some music while studying, or find the best deals on books for class.

  1. Graphing Calculator: This app for your iPhone makes it easy to graph equations so you’ll stay on top of everything in your math courses.
  2. Pandora: With Pandora (which can be accessed both online and from your phone), you can create radio stations with a central theme that are sure to get you pumped to get work done.
  3. Wi-Fi Locator: If your school doesn’t have super fast, free wifi all over campus, you’ll benefit from this application that can tell you the best places to head to find it.
  4. Chegg: Through both the Chegg app and the company’s website, students can rent books instead of buying them, offering the potential to save big each semester.
  5. Book Burro: Firefox users can download this extension to easily find the best deals on books by tracking prices across sites to ensure the lowest prices possible.


Ready to tackle your homework? These tools can make the process a little easier and ensure that you stay on top of all of your work.

  1. Google Drive: With Google Drive, students have free access to software that will let them create spreadsheets, documents, and presentations. Even better, the site can help save time as students can access it from anywhere that has an Internet connection, no flash drive necessary.
  2. BibMe: Not sure how to start creating a bibliography? This site can help, allowing you to easily input information about your courses and get citations in MLA, APA, or Chicago style.
  3. Trello: For group work, Trello might be a good solution. It allows students to create a project, list what needs to be done, and to assign those tasks to group members.
  4. Oh Don’t Forget: Can’t ever seem to remember to do your homework? With Oh Don’t Forget, students can input a reminder online and get a text message when it’s time to tackle a task.
  5. GradeFix: If you’re looking for a more comprehensive way to make sure you’re on top of your class work then sign up for GradeFix. It’s a homework planner that can help you optimize your schedule so that you’ll get the best grades possible.


Staying organized is often a key component of being more productive. These tools are designed to make it easier to get and stay organized throughout the school year.

  1. MindMeister: When tackling a big project it’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed. MindMeister can help to remedy that by mapping out your thoughts and ideas in a way that can be more easily translated into your final project.
  2. MindGenius: Another option for mind mapping is MindGenius. Developed with businesses in mind, the site is great for project and presentation planning.
  3. Zotero: Also great for working on projects is Zotero. This tool, integrated into your web browser itself, allows you to collect, organize, and get citations for your work. You can also easily share those resources with others in your class.
  4. iStudiezPro: If your life is pretty disorganized, a good choice to get things in order is iStudiez Pro. The app, available for iPhone, iPad, and Macs, helps you track your projects, class work, and other commitments. Another option is Studious, which also helps you to organize classes, homework, and other assignments.
  5. Dropbox: For students on-the-go, Dropbox is a great resource. It can be used on a computer or a mobile device to store and share any documents you need for class.


Don’t waste time using inefficient research tools. Employ these productivity boosters instead.

  1. Wikipedia: While Wikipedia won’t fly as a source for your papers, you can use it as a starting place to learn about a subject and get some valuable links to stronger resources you will be able to use.
  2. Evernote: With Evernote, you’ll be able to easily store and share any kind of research you find on the Web. Even better, you can access it from any device with an Internet connection. You can also use Evernote for studying through the new app Evernote Peek.
  3. CiteULike: If you not only want to store your references but also get access to the research others have done, then consider signing up with CiteULike. It offers both services in one, acting a sort of social research tool.
  4. Quora: Have a question about something? Pose it to the Quora community to get smart, often expert, answers.
  5. Google Scholar: While regular Google is a great tool for research, Google Scholar helps separate the wheat from the chaff but focusing only on academic results.
  6. can help you look up word definitions, get spelling help, and even improve your writing on the Writing Dynamo.


Prepare for your next big exam by trying out one of these helpful productivity tools.

  1. StudyBuddy: This iPhone app is designed to help you improve your study habits. It tracks how many times you get distracted during your study sessions and graphs your study efficiency with the results.
  2. Diigo: Great for research and studying, Diigo makes it possible to bookmark, highlight, take notes, and more right on the Web.
  3. GFlash +: Download this flashcard app onto your smartphone to study class material anywhere, anytime.
  4. Penultimate: If you’ve got an iPad, turn it into the perfect study tool by using this application that lets you easily put down written notes to use later.
  5. Essentials: AccelaStudy has a whole line of Essentials programs for language learning. They’re a free way to study the basics of any language you’re trying to learn for school.