e Help Learning for the Busy Student

e Help Learning for the Busy Student

In a traditional brick and mortar university, students can find everything they need on campus.  Tutoring, financial aid, information technologies and a host of other services are all located under one roof, making it easy for traditional students to quickly find the services they need.  If you are an online college student working towards your degree, or a lifelong learner using MOOCs, your Student Services Building is … the Internet. There are limitless options for each service you may need and probably some helpful services you don’t even know exist. In this post, we will look at some of the most helpful virtual services on the Web.



Technology has made it possible to study more efficiently and without carrying your textbook and notes everywhere. If you like to study alone you can also make online flashcards, study guides and quizzes on sites like Quizlet. If you are always on the go, STUDYBLUE offers free mobile apps so you can mobilize your notes and flashcards. That means you can study wherever and whenever you want.   More specific study aids like CliffsNotes are now mobile. CliffsNotes provides literature, math, science and foreign language study guides online or in app form. Prefer to study with friends? Sign up with Open Study  or Piazza and you can join an online study group.



Here is a place that the Internet offers a superior service to the in-person thing. With online tutoring, you can work on your own schedule, get connected instantly, to someone who can help right away. It’s also usually significantly cheaper than in-person tutoring, which can run at $100+ per hour. Or, if you don’t need your own private lesson, sites like Khan Academy (or even YouTube) can help you grasp tough concepts quickly.



Carrying around enormous textbooks is still a necessity for many college classes. Sites like Amazon offer new, used, and rental textbooks as well as eTextbooks — which are much lighter than their traditional counterparts.  Chegg  offers similar services, and trade-ins are free and easy on both sites. Flat World Knowledge  publishes open textbooks for the 125 most enrolled college courses. Their eTextbooks are no longer free, but still much cheaper than the traditional textbook.



How many things are you juggling right now along with your classes? Keeping all your ducks in a row while in college is priceless. The organizational website Lifehack offers a productivity section covering topics like setting goals, task tracking, time management and even daily inspirational quotes. If need help organizing your daily life, the iProcrastinate app lets you create to-do lists. The myHomework app helps you keep track of all your assignments, quizzes and tests. Dropbox allows you to save all your files, essays and presentations online. This keeps your computer’s memory free, and if it crashes all your information is still safe and sound. If it’s your brain that needs organizing, then neuroscientist developed Luminosity offers a fun daily brain training program to maximize its potential.


The lists above are just the tip of the Internet’s educational iceberg, but they are some of the best out there. They will at least get you started down the road to academia. Happy studying!


The author works for InstaEDU and lives in San Francisco.