Top 10 Android Apps for College Students

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Do you have everything you need to finish out the semester?  Notebooks, pencils, pens, that messenger bag you saw that looked like it could hold half your textbooks and your laptop and not drag you down.  But what about all those other things designed to make your life much easier that weren’t around when your parents were going through their own college experience?  Anymore, the smart phone is as much an academic tool as it is a functional device to call home to the parents suffering from an empty nest.  There are apps for everything from document sharing to voice recording, and a lot of these can be put to good use in the classroom.  We’ve gathered together the ten apps most likely to make getting through your studies easier and definitely without breaking the bank.

1.  Amazon Kindle/Barnes & Noble (B&N) Nook
nook-android-app kindle-android-app
The primary tool of any successful college student is having the right books.  Both Amazon Kindle for Android and B&N Nook for Android apps allow you to download your existing e-book library for fast and easy reference.  Most Android-based phones come with the Kindle app already installed, but both apps are free, user-friendly, and grant access to thousands upon thousands of books and textbooks and often at a significantly lower cost than buying the same texts from the campus bookstore.  Features include bookmarking, highlighting, an in-house dictionary, and word/phrase search function.  If you are serious about having e-book copies of all your text books, equipping yourself with both apps is highly recommended.  Neither retailer has the e-book rights to everything, but between both, most bases can be covered.

2. Gdocs for Android
google-docs-app
Google Docs has taken their revolutionary web-based word processing software and made it applicable to the smart phone.  Access existing files, create new ones, generate .pdfs, import and export documents, and share your files with others with this free app—just as if you were sitting right at your computer.  The best part?  You can print straight from your phone via Google Cloud to any printer connected to the internet via a computer or Wi-Fi.

3.  Study Droid
studydroid-app
Use flashcards to study?  Don’t bother getting pack upon pack of 3-by-5 cards anymore.  Study Droid is an independently designed free application that works on both your computer and smart phone to create, organize, and study with flashcards.  There is even an extensive database of cards made by other users (the site claims over 10 million) to add to your own collection.

4. WikiDroid
wikidroid-app
The full power of Wikipedia comes to your fingertips with this free WikiDroid app by Sirius Applications Ltd.  Search articles, find sources, or delve deeper into a subject to get you started on that research assignment.  We just recommend keeping your phone put away when exam time comes around.

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5.  Evernote
evernote-app
This goes out and beyond the default daily diary pre-installed on Android operating systems.  A New York Times “Top 10 Must-Have App,” Evernote lets you keep track of things as they happen: something your professor mentioned in passing during office hours, a debate you had with a friend where neither of you had a pen and paper, even keeping track of that perfect study nook you found at a coffee shop a short walk off campus.  It operates off your Google account and lets you keep notes via text, voice, or photo.  It even tracks your location for each note so that you can look it up on a map later if necessary.  This is incredibly useful even outside of an academic setting, and the clean design makes it fast and easy to use.  What makes it even better?  It syncs to every electronic device you have that can have the app installed.  Access the notes on your phone from your computer or tablet and vice versa.  Information you need when and where you need it.

6.  Droidscan
droidscan-app
No more fighting for the scanners or Xerox machines in the computer lab and campus library.  Droidscan is a free app that acts as a full or partial document scanner just by using the built-in point-and-shoot camera your smart phone comes equipped with.  Images are converted into .jpeg or .pdf format and saved at a high and readable resolution.  The Pro (paid) version of this app allows for a few more high-tech features such as incorporating multiple images into one file, upload with Gdocs, and easy sharing of multi-page .pdfs.

7. CoursePro
coursepro-app
Track your homework assignments and grades with this simple and free CorsePro app.  It is only in the demo stages, currently, which limits the number of courses trackable with it.  However, if you are the sort of student that likes to keep organized and keep a close eye on your personal progress at the same time, this app is a promising must-have.

8. Voice Recorder
voice-recorder-app
This is another free app off the Android Market that syncs with your Google account, allowing you to not only record audio of anything from simple notes-to-self to lectures but to email the file to wherever it might need to go quickly and easily.  Files are also searchable by title and date, and a bonus is that these same files (where appropriate) can be turned into ringtones.

9. Mint
mint-app
Here is an app truly invaluable to the average, starving college student.  Track your finances, your tuition payments, your text book expenditures, your meal allowances, all through the clean design of this free app from Intuit Inc.  Spending too much at Starbucks?  Mint will tell you exactly how much.  Sign up with your email, create a password, connect your bank account and credit cards, and start tracking.  The app is secure, so losing your phone won’t mean that someone has direct access to your accounts and savings without knowing your specific log-in information and password.  The only noticeable drawback could arise depending on what phone you use.  The site claims: “We currently don’t support Android phones with a QVGA display, such as the Motorola Charm or the Samsung Moment.”

10. SnapTell
snaptell-app
Book shopping or getting stuff for the dorm?  Grocery shopping and really wanting something other than ramen that’s just as cheap?  SnapTell is a free application for both Android and iPhone that lets you take a picture of a product’s barcode and compare it to other retailers on the fly.  The Android app, particularly, has a function that allows for image recognition as well as barcode identification, making it indispensable to the frugal shopper.

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Internet Security for College Students

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It’s easy to be lured into thinking that college is a carefree experience; that is until your computer is hacked, hit with a virus or malware. Now that computers play an integral part in most every college student’s academic career, make sure to get the school year off to a good start by practicing computer and online safety skills. (more…)

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New survey finds more than ninety percent of the College Faculty use social media at work

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New survey finds more than ninety percent of the College Faculty use social media at work

Denver, CO (PRWeb) April 11, 2011

College faculty are twice as likely as other employees are using social media as part of their work, and more than 80 percent of the faculty are using some form of social media in their education, according to a new survey by the Babson Survey Research Group and Pearson. The results were presented at Cité 2011, Pearson’s 12th annual higher education technology conference.

The survey of nearly 2,000 faculty found that over 90 percent of college faculty use of social media at work, compared with 47 percent of workers in other industries. In class, 80 percent of respondents report using social media for a particular aspect of their training. Of these, nearly two-thirds using social media in their class sessions, and 30 percent after the content for students to look beyond the classroom.

“Faculty are big users of and believers in social media – nearly 80 percent use at least one online social media site for their professional careers to support activities. More than three quarters visited a social media site in the past month for personal use, with half of those posting content, “said Jeff Seaman, Ph.D., co-director of the Babson Survey Research Group.

More than 40 percent of faculty say they require students to read or see social media as part of a course assignment, and 20 percent assign students to comment or to social media sites to place. Almost half of the faculty use of video and other sites in their education, with another third using video alone.

“My students have to leave their university experience, informed and ethical citizens twenty-first century,” said Krista Jackman, professor of English at the University of New Hampshire. “Social media in the university classroom, a mix of science to promote the incredible power of social networks to ultimately help students responsibly maneuver through an ever more technologically-oriented world.”


Faculty

using social media to support professional career activities has the largest number by using YouTube, Facebook and blogs. Facebook daily use on 11 percent exceeds all other sites. The majority of faculty report, more than one social media site for personal use, and almost 30 percent to three or more sites. Facebook and YouTube are the most visited for personal use.

addition, faculty say concerns about privacy, the integrity of students’ entries and the time required of the faculty are important or very important barriers to social media. Still, the vast majority believe there is value in social media for education, YouTube and other online videos and podcasts as the most valuable use for the class, followed by blogs.

The survey valuable insight into how faculty embrace social media in all aspects of their lives, including the class offers, and stresses the importance of investing in these instruments to enhance students’ learning, “said Don Kilburn, CEO of Pearson Learning Solutions. “This is exactly the strategy we pursue in Pearson, as evidenced by our partnership with Columbia University to an innovative online learning program that uses social technology platform to Pearson’s design to support cooperative learning.”

About Pearson

Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, global reach and market-leading businesses in education, business and consumer publishing (NYSE: PSO).

Media contact: Susan Aspey, susan.aspey (at) Pearson (dot) com or (800) 745-8489

About Babson Survey Research Group

The Babson Survey Research Group at Babson College has regional, national and international research projects, including survey design, sampling methodology, data integrity, statistical analysis and reporting.

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