Quizlet (free and paid): This app/website provides a tool for practice tests or quizzes. You can create your virtual flashcards. Then, your virtual flashcards lead you to use other options, such as practice quizzes of multiple questions and matching games.
Anki (free): Another website app for creating virtual flashcards. Supports images, audio, videos and scientific markup (via LaTeX). Helpful for learning a language, memorizing historical events, names & faces, and geography, studying for math or science exams, etc.
Kahoot! (free and paid): Study Modes in the app for iOS, Android, and Chromebooks provide a self-paced study experience for learners with different ways to practice and prepare for exams by creating virtual flashcards, practice, test, and peer-to-peer challenges.
Google Calendar (free): This app/website is a virtual calendar. You can set alerts when you schedule events, assignments, or projects deadlines. Whenever an email with an event attached is sent to your Gmail, it can automatically go into your Google calendar if you set it that way.
Remember the Milk (RTM) To-Do List (free and paid): A to-do list app that alerts you of your tasks and assignments or projects based on upcoming deadlines. The app automatically sets you up with a RTM email address, so each email sent to this special address is automatically converted into a task, and added to your Remember The Milk account.
24me (free): This app has a virtual calendar, to-do list, and notes including weather and directions with various modes of transportation. The app syncs with Google Calendar, Outlook Calendar, and iCal.
My Study Life (free): This program is a mobile app and desktop website. Your dashboard tracks your exam/quiz dates as well as your assignments for completion. It shows you how many days before the deadline. It will alert you when the deadline is due via your computer and/or your phone.
Todoist (free and paid): Helpful for students who want to plan not only their school work, but errands, travel, and other tasks as well. In “Settings,” you choose whether you want to receive push notifications, email notifications, or both AND choose how much time beforehand you want to receive the automatic reminder.
Trello (free and paid): A project management app that lets you organize to-do lists and projects into visual boards. Each board in Trello allows you to create lists inside, and these lists have cards. You can attach files to each card, as well as add labels, task lists, commenting among many other features.
Notion (free and paid): The Notion app is productivity where you can construct an interface to manage your school work and personal life. It can be used for note-taking, creating blog posts, organizing assignments, and scheduling. On your notion, you're able to create multiple pages to facilitate this activity. While there is a learning curve when learning to set up your first page. It can be incredibly useful once understood. The Notion web-based application is available on your browser and also has an app on iOS and Android.
Glean (*request to use through SAS): This web-based application helps students to improve their learning by capturing audio, text, and uploading lecture slides in one place. With a click of a button, you can tag important information during class and mark sections that you need to review. After class you can easily navigate between the sections of the audio that you've highlighted, write more detailed notes and review the important information, helping to reinforce your learning. Also, once your recording is finished, users can create an audio transcript, which can take a few minutes to process (note- transcript is not created in real-time; available once recording is complete). For your browser, Glean is supported using either Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge. Software is available both online and offline through a cloud feature. Glean has a library of built-in training videos. *SAS has a limited number of Glean licenses available for the semester. If you are interested in using Glean, please contact SAS (firstname.lastname@example.org). You can also sign-up to purchase your own individual license. **Note for Mac Users. If you have a Mac device and are taking a course in an online/remote format, you will have to open the Zoom application in your web browser to use the Glean software. We encourage you to take a look at this helpful guide for joining a Zoom meeting in a browser.
Smartpens (*request to use through SAS): Smartpens record everything you hear, say, and write while linking your audio recordings to your notes. This enables you to go back and listen to the lecture simply by tapping on your notes. SAS offers both Echo Smartpen, Livescribe Symphony Smartpen, and Livescribe 3 Smartpen to aid with notetaking. *SAS has a limited number of smartpens available for a trial period and/or semester loan. If you are interested in using a smartpen and attending a training, please contact SAS (email@example.com). You can also purchase your own personal smartpen from the website links above.
Otter.ai (free and paid): Otter is a live transcription tool that records audio and converts it into text. It may be useful for lectures and meetings. You can also upload an audio recording and it will convert it into text. You can search the transcription and upload terminology to improve transcription accuracy. As you record audio, you can add comments, highlight sentences, and add images to supplement the recording. While you need an internet connection for live transcription, you can record while offline and then transcribe once re-connected. A free version is available with limited features and recording time.
OneNote (free): A digital notetaking app for iOS and Windows devices with a web-based app available for creating typed/handwritten digital notes, recording audio and syncing it across devices, and importing PDFs, DOCs, PPTs, images, etc. for easy annotation. Has unlimited storage space for notetaking and can create notebooks/nested folders for different courses.
Digital Notetaking App for iPhones and iPads (free and paid features): To create typed and handwritten searchable notes, record and sync audio across multiple devices, and import PDFs, DOCs, PPTs, images, GIFs, etc. for easy annotation.
Flora (free): This app is useful when you want to stay off your phone with a set timer to focus on your tasks. You grow a virtual tree every time you accomplish your goal. If you pick your phone up before the time is over, your virtual tree dies. As you complete many goals, you have created your virtual forest.
SelfControl App (free): This app only works for Apple products and blocks you from accessing any websites of your choice until your set time block set is lifted. This app is perfect for preventing someone from going onto social media instead of working on a paper. SelfControl is not available for Windows but there are plenty of alternatives that runs on Windows with similar functionality. The best Windows alternative is Cold Turkey, which is free. Other interesting Windows alternatives to SelfControl are FocusMe, Pluckeye, Freedom and BrowseControl.
Pomodoro Timer (free): Helps you effectively manage your time and work on a task without distractions. Each Pomodoro is a 25-minute cycle followed by a 5-minute break. After the fourth Pomodoro, you will take a 15-minute break. If you prefer, you can customize your timer to meet your needs if you focus better with shorter or longer periods of work and/or breaks.
Simply Noise (free): A free color noise generator. Has both a website and an app version.
Coffitivity (free and paid): This website and app recreates the ambient sounds of a café to boost your creativity and help you work better. Silence can be distracting for some, so if you like the sounds of a social setting then you can try the three free ambient sounds and get a feel for this type of tool. If this type of sound motivates you, try it out when studying or reading!
Focus Feature on Phone (free): A feature on your phone that can help reduce distractions and set boundaries.
Grammarly (free and paid for advanced options): This program works well as an add-on for computers and checks basic grammatical mechanics, tones, or spelling errors for writing papers or emails. However, it does not help with topic organization and clarity.
Inspiration (can sign-up for a free 30-day trial, but costs $ after): A mind mapping tool that helps generate and structure ideas in a visual way. You can then convert these mind maps into PowerPoint presentations or Word documents to help organize your thoughts during the paper writing process.
ZenPen (free): A very simple website with only four feature options, and the goal is to help you get motivated to start the writing process in a low distraction setting. Blocks out all distractions so that you can concentrate on writing (one of the options is to go full screen to block out distractions). Can also reverses the contrast so you can type black text on a white background or white text on a black background, set a word count, and save the essay as a text file that you can download (Downloading the file is the only way to save. You can open the downloaded text file and copy and paste the text into a Word or Google Doc to edit further). Note- there is no spell check because the goal of this platform is getting you motivated to write.
Written Kitten (free): An easy-to-use website to help with motivation for getting started with writing. Encourages the user to write by setting word count goals and offering you a visual treat once you reach that goal (can choose among a virtual kitten, puppy, or bunny).
Google Voice Typing (free): This feature only works when you use Google Chrome for Google Slides and Google Docs. You can turn on the microphone feature under tools to speak into. The computer will convert your speech to type for you.
Microsoft Word Dictation Feature (free): This feature in Microsoft Word can type what you say and you can also use punctuation commands. The feature can support nine languages including: Chinese, French, German, Italian, and Spanish (Mexico and Spain), and English (the United States, Canada, and the UK).
Magnifying Glass + Flashlight (Apple): This app works for the iPhone. You can zoom in and brighten the images. Also, you can adjust the screen to a dark contrast black mode.
Magnifier + Flashlight (Android): This app works for Android phones. You can zoom in, use lighting controls, and your flashlight to get a better image or activate the negative color mode on the screen. You can screenshot the image so you can read, save, or share it.
Kurzweil 3000 (free for all Brandeis community members): Kurzweil 3000 is an assistive technology, text-to-speech software, that supports in making course curricula accessible and is free for all Brandeis students, faculty, and staff. There is a desktop version (which you can download from ITS’s website), an online version, and a web extension for Firefox and Google Chrome. SAS and Library Services have a user-friendly Kurzweil 3000 guide (PDF) for all Brandeis community members. If you still have any questions on how to use the software, please reach out to SAS (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Recently, we have been promoting the online version of Kurzweil 3000.They had an update that improves the functionality online over the downloaded software. You can watch the instructional video to get started once you have created your username and password to log in.
Speechify (free and paid): This software can read messages, documents, news articles, and social media on your computer, phone, and tablet. You can maintain a free trial of Speechify by skipping credit card information.
Natural Reader (free and paid): This website can read aloud your course readings (you can either upload the document or copy/paste the text onto the actual website) and it could also be helpful to allow you to listen to your paper drafts for revision. You can adjust the computer voice tone with a choice of high or low-toned voices.
TTSReader (free): This website and its free app version is similar to Natural Reader and can read aloud your papers or your course’s reading materials, from PDFs to ebooks. You can adjust the reading speed.
Nagish (free): This is a free Apple/Android phone app that provides automatic text-to-speech and speech-to-text options when initiating or receiving phone calls. While speaking during the call, you can use your own voice or even type out your message on your phone for the caller to hear a natural-sounding automatic voice. While listening during the call, you can use the speaker as well as read the captioning. Although this conversion can lag for 3-4 seconds, and the automatic captioning can contain some errors, it is a good app for supporting communication access in situations when a phone call is required.
MathType (free and paid): This software add-on for Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel), Google Docs, and Mac Office Software (Pages, Key Note) converts math and science equations into an accessible format that can be read by a screen reader such as Jaws, Read Aloud, and Voice Over.
Math Assistance from Microsoft OneNote (free): This program requires a Microsoft OneNote account. Write or type any math problem and Math Assistant in OneNote can solve it for you—helping you reach the solution quickly, or displaying step-by-step instructions that help you learn how to reach the solution on your own. After solving your equation, there are many options to continue exploring math learning with Math Assistant.
Khan Academy (free): This website provides many free videos that demonstrate various math subjects, such as algebra, pre-calculus, and calculus in a verbal and captioning format to refresh any lessons and/or clarify course materials. It also includes other science subjects, such as physics, chemistry, biology, and electrical engineering. Khan Academy does have more resources in addition to math and science lessons including history, personal finance, art, career guidance, prep for standarized testing, etc.
Wolfram Alpha (free): A technology and knowledgebase that contains lots of information on a variety of topics (I.e. mathematics, science & technology, society & culture, etc.) by simply using the search function.
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