Ten apps to help you manage your life

Student using smartphone (Photo: Alanah Hallam)

New applications for Android and iPhone smartphones come out all the time – so which ones would students put in their top 10? Alanah Hallam has been finding out.

Mobile devices are the ubiquitous tool of the 21st century. According to the GSMA real-time tracker, there are nearly 8 and a half billion gadgets now connected to the internet, and more than five billion of those are smartphones.

It’s no surprise that school and tertiary students rely on their smartphones to stay organised, manage their money and reach their full academic potential.

Law student Marlie Caile says her top priority is finding apps to help her stick to a tight budget and an equally tight schedule.

“I’m constantly searching through the educational section of the app store to find new, and engaging apps to improve either my organisation or just simply to save me some money,” she says.

She’s a huge fan of Uber, which she uses to get to her Collingwood campus from home.

“I do have a car, but by the time I pay for parking and fuel, Uber is a far cheaper option,” she tells Hatch.

Molly Thompson, who is studying paramedicine at Victoria University, says she “couldn’t live” without apps like My Fitness Pal.

“This app helps me stay on track with my own health, whilst I’m busy stressing about assignments”.

Molly also has to keep a close watch on her spending, particularly after recent fuel price rises pushed up the cost of her two-hour commute to university.

“I rely heavily on Budget Daily. I’m hopeless at keeping a budget, but this app helps to remind me to remain cautious of my spending,” she says.

So what were the top 10 apps recommended by Melbourne students like Marlie and Molly? Here’s the list:

1. Student Edge (Android, IOS)
The pressures of due dates and exams is enough. You don’t need them made any worse worrying about things like finances and learning how to write a resume. This app is your  knight in shining armour. It provides access to free student coupons and to articles on all kinds of useful tips, like CV writing and how to apply for a job. ooya!

2. Lost on Campus (Android, IOS)
Let’s face it, we can’t all be Columbus with directions and some universities are just too big. This app has maps of 52 Australian universities and TAFE campuses, right down to the locations of toilets, lecture theatres, car parks and even free-to-use microwaves. This is the last time you arrive late to class or have to eat a cold meal.

3. My Study Life (Android, IOS)
If you live a busy lifestyle, struggle to stay organised or just need a virtual hand every now, and then this is the perfect app for you. You can set class times and due dates that you can adjust to remind you 10 minutes, a day or a week in advance. You can even change the colour of your events on your calendar for a bit of nerdy eye candy.

4. Speechnotes
This Android app has a twin in the iPhone world with the Apple ‘Dictation’ app. Speech To Text helps people like Chantel Trollip, from the ‘Melbourne Girl Pals’  Facebook Page, to convert lectures into written notes without having to write like a chipmunk on caffeine. What a time to be alive.

5. Head Space (Android, IOS)
This app is chosen specifically for its health benefits. It’s important that while students are stressed and living a busy lifestyle, they take some time for their mental health. This app sends notifications throughout the day gently reminding syou to stop and breath. According to Kelly Marksberry from stress.org, abdominal breathing for 20 to 30 minutes each day can help reduce anxiety and stress.

6. UBER (Android, IOS)
We all know Uber can save you a truckload of cash. And you pay with a pre-registered credit card, so if you’ve forgotten your card, Uber has got you.

7. My Fitness Pal (Android, IOS)
It’s easy to go home after studying, order a slab of pizza and fall asleep, but it’s not healthy. There’s plenty of good research to show that memory, problem-solving and attention all improve! My Fitness Pal helps you track your calorie intake and exercise regime, and suggests nutritious meals.

8. Budget Daily Original (Android)
Keeping track of your dolary doo’s has never been so simple. Not only is Molly Thompson a religious user of this app, so are the 137 other people who left 5 star reviews. The ol’ pen and paper budget was trusty in it’s day, but this app has it all for the tech savvy student.

9. Flash cards+ by Chegg (IOS)
This application is the bees knees! Recommended by Brooke Fleming, a sports science student at Deakin University, it saves a substantial amount of time writing flash cards (and losing them or dropping them on the tram). You can also import photos, which is good news for the estimated 65 percent of us who are visual learners. Students and if you’re not Picasso on the flash cards then use this app.

10. Paw shake (Android, IOS)
This last one is a little off topic but if you love your dog and can’t find time to take your mongrel buddy for a walk, you will love this app. Pawshake is a dog walking app where you just punch in your details, meet some puppers – and you can earn cash, too, by walking dogs in your area when you’re not studying. Alex Witty, a student at Vic Uni, says it’s a perfect side hustle if you’re tight for cash, and a great way to get exercise as well. – Alanah Hallam (@Alanah_Hallam).