You've probably heard a lot more over the years about how your phone is hindering your education rather than how it is helping, but regardless of what your parents and teachers may have told you, you really can use your smartphone to become a better student. They are tools like anything else, and while you can waste the time you should spend studying for a test texting your friends or falling down the rabbit hole of watching one related video after another, you can also learn a lot with the help of your phone.
Record Lectures and More
You can use your smartphone to record audio or video of lectures you attend so that you can review them later. Some people brainstorm better by talking than writing, especially if they are also engaged in an activity like walking or driving. If this is the case for you, you can record your musings on a smartphone. To save time, you can use a transcription service that converts audio or video to text in seconds instead of going through the painstaking process of transcribing the lecture or your own audio notes yourself. This can help you be more productive.
Stay Organized and Focused
Your phone can help you keep everything from your schedule to your notes better organized. There are a number of different apps that help you put your notes in order and keep up with your calendar. Many can send you reminders about tests, meetings and more. Some of your phone's simplest tools can also be the most powerful. For example, you can use the timer to work in short bursts, which people often find is more helpful for their productivity than sitting and slogging through the same project for hours on end.
Resources at Your Fingertips
Your phone helps ensure that everything is handy at all times, from your e-textbooks to your professor's email address to online assignments. If you're waiting in line somewhere, instead of scrolling through social media, try reading a few pages of an assignment. You can even store papers and other work in progress online to quickly access them for review or to add a few sentences here and there when you have the time.
One of the biggest benefits a smartphone can offer is access to information that can help enhance your learning. Some of that information may be directly related to your classes. For example, if you're studying French, there are plenty of apps that can help you improve in the language, from flash cards that build your vocabulary to snippets from native speakers to improve your listening skills and more. Whether you need to drill yourself on math formulas, science terms or historical dates, there's probably an app that can do that. Your phone can also connect you with topics you are passionate about even if they are not directly related to a particular assignment, class or test you are studying for. For example, there are podcasts on topics ranging from marine biology to politics and current events to ancient history. Just be sure that you evaluate any online sources for accuracy.