Top Web Apps for College Students

Written by Abby Nieten on July 2, 2012

Posted in Education

Remember the excitement you felt when you got your official “supplies list” a few weeks before the first day of school? If you were like me, going to Walmart or Target to get your new school supplies was the most glorious thing in the world. Maybe I’m a nerd, but I still get excited about buying new notebooks and folders before I start fall semester, even as a senior in college. That being said, if the seventh-grade version of me knew about all of the awesome web apps that are now available to college students, I’m pretty sure time travel would be invented by now.

There’s probably a web app out there that would have told eighth-grader me that pigtails weren’t the best look.

Check out some apps that every college student should be giddy about:

1. Dropbox – Dropbox is a great app to backup important files or save storage space on your computer. After creating a free account and downloading Dropbox to your computer, all of your files can be saved in its cloud-based storage system. Better yet, you can access the files on any computer that has Dropbox downloaded on it. Free users get up to 18 GB of storage space, which basically means you can store A LOT of documents, photos, and songs. Additionally, students with a .edu email address can receive 500 extra MB by referring other college students to the app, which means you can store even more Justin Beiber songs – I mean, papers.

2. Google Docs/Calendar – This web app might as well be called Google AWESOME because it’s such a wonderful tool for college students, especially ones who have Gmail accounts through their school. Google Docs (or Drive, on some email systems) is another great file storage product, and it makes sharing files super easy. One of my favorite features in Docs is the ability to share a document with someone and you both can edit it in real time, which can be helpful when completing group projects. Google Calendar is equally sharing-friendly, as you can create events and invite others by entering their email address. After they accept, your event will be visible on their Google Calendar as well.

3. Formstack – Is your sorority hosting a volleyball tournament for charity? Participants can register online with a Formstack form. Do you need to hold officer elections for your club? Send your members a voting form via email. Formstack is great because all submissions are stored in one centralized database, meaning you don’t need to sort through tons of papers to gather information. Seriously, who gets paper cuts these days? Additionally, Formstack plans start at $14/month – great for that college student budget.

4. WordPress – WordPress is a solid blogging platform for a variety of bloggers, including photographers, casual bloggers and small businesses. Additionally, college students can use it as an online portfolio. Several academic programs now require students to submit a portfolio of their student accomplishments prior to graduation, and WordPress is a good option for students who want a clean, online resource to display their work. With an easy-to-navigate user dashboard and a variety of style templates, users can customize their blogs to make it as professional or artsy as they please.

5. Citation Machine – Let’s be real here. Who actually uses a reference book to cite their sources in a paper? No one. While there are many citation creators available online, Citation Machine is my favorite because it allows users to create citations in Chicago-style (which a lot of other citation apps make you pay for). If you want your references to be formatted in AP or MLA style, you can just paste the link into Citation Machine, and it will create the citation for you.