Back to the books? All the apps you'll need for Uni life.

15th November 2017

By Jen_sl

Going to Uni offers new experiences and challenges. So why not make studying easier with our handy app guide?

Whether you’ve just complete a gap year of travelling, or coming straight from sixth form or college, studying at university can be a big transition.

Many people move to a new city when they start university, so you may be living with flatmates for the first time. And the level of study required will also be far greater than what you’ve experienced before.

Luckily, there is a variety of apps you can download to help make settling in easier. From daily organisation tools to study aids and budget planners, check out our guide to the apps that every university student should have:


Created by textbook selling platform Chegg, its Flashcards+ app is a great way of making quick-fire cards to help with module revision and delivering presentations. You can also share your cards with other app users, meaning if you divide your module between multiple people on your course, you speed up revising the subjects you need.

Google Drive

Another mainstay of your phone apps should be Google Drive. When you’re working on projects with multiple classmates and jotting down notes in an instant, version control and accessibility is essential.

Google Drive makes sure that everyone you invite can edit a document together, as well store up to 15GB for free (with additional storage available for a fee) and make documents available wherever you go.

Lecture Capture

Note-taking during lectures can sometimes be a challenge, as lecturers mention extra material and off-the-cuff examples that can help your study, so long as you can jot them down quick enough. With Lecture Capture, you can record their lecture to review again later, as well as affix notes and references to make sure you have a comprehensive account of everything mentioned.

Oxford Dictionaries Quick Search

Essay writing is the backbone of many university degrees, meaning your command of the English language must be strong. Keeping the Oxford Dictionaries Quick Search app handy means you won’t have worry about making a critical error halfway through an important hypothesis or reference.


When researching a topic or browsing for inspiration, there’s nothing more frustrating than finding something incredibly useful, and forgetting about it later. Pocket is a bookmarking app that lets you keep things organised and saves important articles from being lost in your regular browser bookmarks. You can even watch videos in-app for quick referencing.


Back to essays, this time tackling the cumbersome task of referencing each of your sources. Essays demand each point to be backed up with a reference to prove where you took that information from, and correct formatting is essential.

RefME removes all confusion by using your phone’s camera as a barcode scanner and displaying how the book should be correctly referenced.

Self Control for Study

For the due-tomorrow assignments and pre-exam revision, we recommend Self Control for Study, which helps you regulate how much time you spend procrastinating on your phone.You can schedule quick breaks for every hour or a block of time without distraction, and your phone will disable all data connections to make sure you stay focussed for your allotted time.


Perfect for creating exam revision material, use StudyBlue as the central hub of storing all of your study material. You can test your knowledge of your modules in the app itself, and chart your progress each time you challenge yourself until you’re achieving 100%.


Sometimes, the only thing holding us back from making progress is a little bit of inspiration. If you’re studying a difficult topic or struggling to think of a project to propose for a module, use the TED app.

A special video player for the TED Talk video series, searching for your topic of study might just yield a funny, creative, and supportive talk to get you going in the right direction.

Uni Calculator

No matter what course you’re studying, you’ll be completing a range of modules from different disciplines. Each has its own assignments, deadlines, and exams, so Uni Calculator is here to keep everything in order and track your results so you know what marks you need to achieve the grade you’re aiming for.


Social Life

Around Me

If you’ve just moved to a new city, the experience can be overwhelming. It can take weeks for you to get your bearings and know where everything you need is, but Around Me can help make things much easier.

Utilising your phone’s GPS, you can easily search for nearby amenities from cash points and petrol stations to bars and restaurants. It’s the perfect way to become more acquainted with your new home.


Allowing communication across all smartphone devices, WhatsApp is the easiest way to stay in touch with people from all social circles. Organise group chats for your housemates, course mates, society members, individual projects, and anything that might threaten to fill up in your inbox with regular texts.


While WhatsApp helps organise your communication, Wunderlist will take care of your day itself. Track your work projects, meetings and other tasks to help keep your day organised, and share tasks with other users to make sure everyone stays informed and on time.


Student Living and Welfare

Brain in Hand

While university is an exciting time in your life, it has its share of stresses, and several students have concerns about some aspects of university life. Student support staff are always available, and so is Brain in Hand, to help you come up with smart strategies to manage your mental health.

Circle of 6

Safety is paramount when you’re becoming more independent. The best way to stay safe in a new city when you may be travelling late at night is to use Circle of 6: a quick communication app that lets you get in touch with six of your friends or family in an instant.

If you’re feeling uncomfortable around a stranger and need an interruption or help getting home safely, Circle of 6 is an effective way of putting your mind, and the minds of others, at ease.


It’s no secret that some students enjoy the occasional drink or two. To keep track of what you consume and spend, and to learn about the benefits of cutting back, Drinkaware can help you schedule when you’re setting aside a dry day, and when you can relax with a post-lecture drink.


Find My iPhone

Apple’s own Find my iPhone app is a straightforward way of not only recovering your lost phone but also ensuring that the data stored on it remains safe.

By quickly logging into iCloud through the app, your phone (and any other iOS device) can be found, so long as it has a data connection. You can then remotely make the device emit a sound to help you find it, display a message to instruct anyone who picks it up, or erase its contents if the device is irretrievable.



Meal planning is one of the most beneficial habits you can adopt when you first start university. It helps you not only keep track of what you’re eating, but also save money as you only buy the food that you budget for.

It can be difficult to resist the temptation of a quick and easy takeaway, but MealBoard helps you create weekly meal plans, as well as shopping lists from the ingredients, and edit your own recipes so you can add that touch of home cooking to whatever you make.


It’s great getting to know the new people you live with while at university. It’s not so great when the ugly topic of money needs to be discussed. Stay on top of the shared bills for your accommodation with Splittable, an organisational hub for scheduling your payments and tracking who has paid their share.

Wake N Shake Alarm

Between late-night revision and society outings, just getting out of bed might start to get a little harder. The Wake N Shake alarm app helps wake you up by forcing you to shake your phone until the percentage scale it displays is filled. It’s an ingenious way of making sure you’re alert when you wake and those extra midday naps don’t eat too much into your time.


University is a big change when you first start. Everything around you is new and it can be easy to get confused with so much work and play going on. Use these apps to stay on top of everything and make sure you have the time of your life while at university.

Do you have any apps that help you through your studies? Post a comment below or through Twitter @giffgaff.

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