You won’t develop good habits by using apps alone, but you can use them to make your life as a student much easier. With the amount of responsibility you have during college, you need the right tools to help you get through the day. And you need them from the moment you wake up. The following are the types of apps college students need to use in order to get up, work, and live smarter.

Sleep Cycle

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the best things you can do for yourself as a college student. Understanding how to sleep more efficiently and wake up feeling rested, however, require some assistance when you have a small window of opportunity to sleep and need to be up at a certain time.

In order to manage your sleep cycle, use a sleep-tracking app like SleepBotSleep as Android, or Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock. These apps monitor the movement and noise you make while you sleep in order to intelligently wake you up at the proper time during a sleep cycle.

Additionally, use F.lux to relax your eyes and transition to a good night’s sleep after a long day of staring at your computer screen.


For taking notes, pen and paper may feel right, but organizing and safe-guarding all of your paper notes can become a tedious task.

In the past, we’ve praised Evernote as one of the best note-taking apps for students. Our former editor Shep McAllister even wrote a list of tips for student users on the app’s official blog. Its cross-platform availability makes it the most convient note-taking app to pick up. Use it to organize all of your lecture notes and store pictures of assignment sheets, as Laura Schluckebier suggests, to cut out the hunt for the paper later.

For Windows users, OneNote, available as part of Office 365 University, is the must-use app for taking notes. It allows you to custom organize notes through drag-and-drop boxes, which lets you bring or develop your own note-taking style. As long as you’re willing to put the time into efficiently using it, OneNote will make you a better student. We call it “Microsoft’s best-kept secret.”

If you’ve got friends in a particularly note-heavy class, try collaborative note-taking using Google Docs.


Staying on top of all your tasks is no easy process, but managing to complete everything while balancing a social life and job is sometimes too much. By utilizing a time management system and prioritizing your most important tasks, you can work more efficiently to earn free time.

For keeping track of everything you need to accomplish, Wunderlist is a must-use. It’s a multiple-platform app that syncs to-do lists across devices, so you can receive notifications about pending tasks no matter where you are. (HackCollege’s Robbie Williford uses it to form good habits.) is another great to-do app that makes being attached to your phone actually productive. Every morning, it will ask you to plan your day and remind you of pending tasks. If you’re having trouble keeping everything in check, making your new best friend will help you develop a more productive lifestyle.

If you’re looking for an education-specific app to keep all your classes and homework in order, MyStudyLife makes a great planner — especially when using the Windows 8 app . It allows you to organize tasks by class and keeps you informed of pending work throughout the day by syncing across devices.

Mac users have an abundant supply of productivity apps to choose from; one of the most simple, yet useful, is BreakTime, which reminds you to get up from your computer to take breaks. There’s nothing wrong with being studious, but knowing when to get up and away from your work may benefit both your productivity and creativity. After all, being constantly “busy” often leads to burnout.

Money Management

You may not earn much from your part-time job, but learning to manage what you do have will help you become more fiscally responsible for the future. Using personal finance apps, such as Mint or Kiboo, will make you aware of your spending habits and give you the tools to create a lifestyle-appropriate budget.

If you want to save money for future purchases, goal-tracking Android app Savings Made Simple will tell you exactly how much you need to save each day, week, or month in order to get what you want by a specific date. An alternative for iPhone users is Unsplurge, which makes saving social by allowing friends to track each other’s goals.