"Killer" apps for campus!

The back-to-school season is upon us once again. Media is full of advertisements for everything a student "needs" for school. And I am just a guilty as the rest. However, I spent 9 years on campus as a student and 19 as a professor and I have nothing to gain by influencing your purchase decisions. Besides, most of these apps are free at the App Store and many are on your iPhone!

That said, here is my list of "killer" apps your student's iPhone. 

  1. Reminders. It's only natural to expect your smartphone to remind you of important tasks and deadlines and this is what Reminders does. Students need never miss a deadline or exam again!
  2. Calendar keeps track of your student's busy schedule.
  3. Dictionary provides the definition and pronunciation of any word. Input is accepted from both the mic and keyboard. 
  4. Notes is a handy app for recording ideas. Voice Memos is a nice alternative if you don't want to use the iPhone's virtual keyboard.
  5. Keynote enables students to create attractive presentation graphics wherever they happen to be! $9.99.
  6. Numbers allows students to create spreadsheets on the go! $9.99.
  7. Pages is your mobile word processor complete with templates for common types of documents. $9.99. Keynote, Numbers, and Pages comprise Apple's iWords office productivity suite. iCloud enables your files to automatically synch with your iPad and/or Mac. Files can be exported in MS & PDF formats. 
  8. Flashcards is a great way to learn. You create your own decks and use them to test and reinforce recall.
  9. Calculator is a standard app on the iPhone and is one of those tools no student should ever be without. 
  10. TED is your portal to the greatest ideas presented at the TED Talks. Be inspired by brilliant minds such as Steve Jobs, Sting, Bill Gates, Sir Ken Robinson, Hans Rosling, Al Gore, Peter Norvig, Amory Lovins, Taryn Simon, Melinda Gates, Noel Bairey Merz, Peter Gabriel, and many others. Get inspired! Learn about emerging ideas and technologies! More great talks are added each week! 
  11. PBS is your best home for educational programming; American Experience, Frontline, Future States, Global Voices, Great Performances, HealthSmart, Masterpiece, Nature, NOVA, PBS Arts, NewsHour, Washington Week, and much more. Now you can take the best in documentaries, culture, and news along with you wherever you go!
  12. iBooks is the app I never expected to love. Fortunately for me it came with my iPad & iPhone because I find it the best way to read. Save money by buying digital texts. You can highlight and write notes in the virtual margins. Each book hooks into a dictionary so can lookup words as you encounter them without leaving your book. Best of all you can carry your entire library in your pocket. Bye bye backpack!
  13. Podcasts provides handy access to iTunes' massive library of podcasts. There something for everyone regardless of your major.  You'll even find podcast series from the best universities!
  14. Safari is your window to the Web. Access your email. Google a topic. Do whatever you do on the web with Safari.

I have each of these apps on my iPhone and I don't advise going to school without them.

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Dr. Winegar is available to help your organization wisely use technology. Email him directly at mark.winegar@mac.com or visit www.facebook.com/MobileLearningStudio.