Apps Every Adult Student Should Have

5 Categories of Apps for Students

When I search for apps for students, I'm surprised by how many irrelevant apps come up, including apps for games and movies and shopping. Depending on what you're studying, of course, those apps may be entirely relevant, but for the average student, I don't think so.

I chose five categories of apps that make sense to me for adult students. Within each of those categories, you can probably find thousands of specific apps. My goal is to help you with a place to start in five categories: Coursework, Academics, Organization, Reference, and News.

01
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Coursework

Tablet - Aleksander Rubtsov - Cultura - GettyImages-475149497
Aleksander Rubtsov - Cultura - GettyImages-475149497

Many universities, colleges, and companies use a learning management system or LMS, to communicate coursework, keep track of student progress in the organization, announce campus activities, and to communicate other school info to students, including announcements, assignments, grades, rosters, discussions, and blogs.

Many use Blackboard. If your school uses Blackboard, this is a must-have app for you. Blackboard Mobile Learn works on iPhone®, iPod touch®, iPad®, Android™, BlackBerry®, and Palm® smartphones.

Another popular provider is Desire 2 Learn, or D2L, builders of the online learning platform called Brightspace. A third is eCollege offered by Pearson.

02
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Academics

Laptop and phone - Kevin Dodge - Blend Images - Getty Images 546826651
Laptop and phone - Kevin Dodge - Blend Images - Getty Images 546826651

Apple's iTunes store has some of the best education apps I've seen:

  • Math Apps include specific apps for geometry, algebra, calculus, probability and statistics, and applying math. They have games, too, but most are for younger learners.
  • Science Apps include specific apps for astronomy, earth science, chemistry, life sciences, and physics.
  • History and Geography Apps include maps, world facts, people, and cultures.
  • Language Apps includes reading, vocabulary, grammar, speaking, listening, and dictionaries.
  • Art, Music, and Culture Apps include Sketchbook Pro, Symphony Pro, and Inkpad.

Appolicious.com (creative name!) also has an impressive list of academic apps. Enter Education in the search bar at the top and you'll see all of the choices available.

03
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Organization

Tablet - Rick Gomez - Blend Images - GettyImages-149678577
Rick Gomez - Blend Images - GettyImages-149678577

Lack of organization can be the undoing of a student. If you're not naturally good at organizing, consider finding an app to help you out. I've chosen two that I see often: Zotero and Evernote.

Zotero allows you to grab pages you've found while searching the Internet, organize them the way you want to, and cite them in your school work. You can add notes, attach photos, tag pages, and reference related pages. You can also share the info you've organized. Those are just a few of the things you can do with Zotero.

Evernote is a similar app that allows you to capture web pages, organize them however you want, share them, and find them again. The icon is an elephant head. Think trunk.

Note of caution from About Antivirus Software Guide Mary Landesman: 7 Deadly Sins: Evernote Tips You Should Avoid

04
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Reference

Phone - Peathegee Inc - Blend Images - GettyImages-463246899
Peathegee Inc - Blend Images - GettyImages-463246899

There are reference apps available for just about anything you can think of. I'll list a few here that will serve every student well:

That should get you started!

05
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News

Coffee at Desk - Image Source - GettyImages-152414953
Image Source - GettyImages-152414953

There are apps for most of the world's best and biggest news sources. Whether or not you're a news junkie, it's important for you as an adult student, no matter your area of study, to stay current with what's going on in the world.

Choose your favorite news source, download its app, and check in with it daily. Here are six choices for you: Top 6 iPhone News Apps