5 Pieces of Software Every Student Should Have
By Melissa Burns
Whatever you may think about your current situation, being a student in our golden age of tech is nothing short of awesome. Today’s students have so many tools aimed at making the job of studying quicker, easier, more comfortable and more exciting that it boggles the imagination –and, perhaps, makes choosing ‘the right one’ a little bit difficult. If you have trouble with gathering your own student’s toolkit, consider the options below – they are just a drop in the ocean, but even they can make your life a whole lot easier.
No matter which discipline you are studying, as a college student you will have to do a decent amount of reading and writing. Arranging stats and doing presentation is extremely likely as well. However, even with student’s discounts, Microsoft Office suite still costs a pretty hefty sum. Fortunately, times when we didn’t have a viable alternative are long in the past – today you can use LibreOffice, offering you analogs of Word, Excel and PowerPoint completely free of charge.
2. PDF2XL by Cogniview
PDF is at the same time one of the most widespread and the most unwieldy document formats in existence. On the one hand, it can be read without much ado on almost any device without having to resort to any specialized software. Editing it, however, is an entirely different matter, especially if you are dealing not with texts but with spreadsheets. However, you can convert PDF to Excel using Cogniview software PDF2XL in a matter of minutes, even if we are talking about hundreds of pages. This software allows you to turn any PDF spreadsheet into editable Excel document, and analyze and arrange information the way you need – in other words, it provides irreplaceable help when dealing with large amounts of numerical data.
One of the most annoying and time-consuming parts of student’s life is collecting articles, managing your information sources and arranging citations. Zotero is a powerful and free tool that takes all these tasks upon itself. It helps you quickly bring order to your library, collect articles from the web, promptly find relevant information sources and much, much more.
If you haven’t heard about mind mapping you’ve probably been living under a rock for the last fifteen years; however, there is a lot of difference between hearing about it and actually putting it to practice. XMind is a simple yet effective tool that will help you get into the spirit of the things and start making effective mind maps almost from the get-go.
Note taking has never been so easy and so efficient. At a glance, Evernote doesn’t look all that impressive, but once you’ve made a lot of notes in it, it suddenly grows surprisingly helpful. Find your notes quickly, synchronize them between devices with Evernote and always be ready to write down an interesting and promising idea wherever you are, whatever you are doing.
This programs won’t replace the process of learning per se, but they certainly can make it much easier and less stressful. So don’t hesitate to use them and be thankful for living in such a wonderful age!
Melissa Burns graduated from the faculty of Journalism of Iowa State University in 2008. Nowadays she is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. Her sphere of interests includes startups, information technologies and how these ones may be implemented.
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