With school coming up just around the corner, it is important to have all the tools you might possibly need for the next school year. Nowadays, many students use iPads as a tool in their studies, and for good reason: the iPad has a wealth of amazing apps for education. The following is a roundup of iPad apps that are geared toward, but not limited to, high school students. Find out which apps students can’t miss after the jump.
Let’s face it: iCloud is not the most reliable cloud service, and is certainly not the most practical service if you don’t run OS X at school or at home. Dropbox has been a big player in the cloud storage game for quite some time now, and for good reason.
Using Dropbox, you are able to access your files from any device that has the app installed, or any computer that has internet access. Best part? You can put any type of file you’d like in your Dropbox folder, whether it’s a picture, a PDF, or even an EPS file. Oh yeah—it’s free, too.
Price: Free, extra storage is available at a yearly cost
Google Drive is an awesome cloud service, as it updates in real time and gives everyone 15GB of space for free.
What makes it amazing for students is it serves as a place to create and edit Google Docs. It’s perfect for collaborating, as cloud storage allows anyone in the group to work on it from any device at any time, making the group project much easier to coordinate.
Developer: Google, Inc.
Every student has books, and iBooks has books for every student. This app really does take a load off of your back — figuratively and physically.
iBooks has everything you’ll probably have to read in English class, and even has tons of interactive textbooks for other subjects. You are able to annotate just as you would in a physical book. Plus, many of the textbook offerings have additional content, such as videos and quizzes, to aid your learning.
Notability is the perfect PDF annotator and note-taking app for students. It comes packed with tools, like highlighters, type, pens, and shapes, in order to make your notes beautiful and make PDF annotation very easy.
The in-app filing system also makes it very easy to organize your notes for each class, so you need not worry about losing the notes you are being tested on the next day.
Notability works with Dropbox, so you can have your files saved in the cloud as well.
Developer: Ginger Labs
Whether you use it for taking notes or writing a paper, Pages is a great word processor for the iPad. Being one of the more full-featured word processors for iOS, Pages comes complete with templates that are great for school projects — as well as all the settings that fall in line with standards for papers.
If you prefer to take notes by hand, Penultimate is your fit as it’s the closest you’ll get to the feel of a pen and a notebook on the iPad.
You can sort out your studies in notebooks, which are then synced to your Evernote account for easy access anywhere.
Sure, your teacher may say it is not a reliable source, but there is almost nothing that Wikipedia doesn’t discuss. It’s a great resource when you want to learn just a little bit more about the subject at hand. Besides, it’d probably be the place you’d first look at in a Google search.
Developer: Wikimedia Foundation
WolframAlpha is the ultimate resource for students. The app serves as a database that can bring you virtually anything you wish: the derivative of a function, the location of a satellite at a certain time, unemployment rates in cities across the globe, genealogy — anything. It’s by far one of the most powerful tools a student can have, and a bargain at the price of $1.99.
Developer: Wolfram Alpha LLC
Clear is the perfect task management app for minimalists. Beloved by those who use it on the iPhone, Clear creates lists and lists only: no due dates, no reminders, no distractions. You’d be surprised at how effective (and beautiful) it is.
Developer: RealMac Software
School gets really crazy really quickly, but the iStudiez Team created their app, iStudiez Pro, to help alleviate some of the stress created by your busy schedule.
iStudiez Pro allows you to manage all of your classes and coursework in an effective manner. It breaks down your schedule by the day, so you’re able to see what is coming up and what is due. Also, you’re able to manage your grades within the app itself, so you have a real-time gauge of where you may need to work to improve.
Developer: iStudiez Team
myHomework is one of the best free planner apps there is on the market. Once you add all of your class information, the app is extremely easy to use and keep organized. Adding assignments is easy, and the app has an option for homework, tests, projects, and anything else you may think of.
By signing up for a myHomework account, you’re able to get reminders pushed right to your iPad. If your school uses Teachers.io, all of your homework can be automatically pushed to the app, too. Best yet, it’s all wrapped up into one pretty package.
Developer: Rodrigo Neri
For those who are looking for a little more oomph in their task management app, there is Things for iPad. The app allows you to sort all of your tasks into projects; tasks are then managed by priority, due dates, or other criteria.
One thing that Things for iPad does well is creating a sense of perspective by allowing you to see what is due, what’s due next, then what’s scheduled in the future. You can even add repeating tasks for those quizzes you get every Monday or worksheets you get every Thursday.
Developer: Cultured Code GmbH & Co. KG
30/30 is the ultimate time management tool. This app allows you to break down all the tasks you need to do into a set amount of time: 30 minutes to do your history homework, 20 minutes for math, etc. These timers help you get cracking on your work so it’ll actually get done.
Developer: Binary Hammer
Study Tools and Resources
If you have a Smart Cover, this one is for you. Evernote Peek makes clever use of the Smart Cover’s technology to create an effective study system. When you flip up your Smart Cover, Peek sends you a flashcard. The answer is revealed by flipping up the cover even further.
iTunes U is Apple’s education center. Featuring a large library of video and audio podcasts as well as books and documents created by teachers and professors across the globe, you are sure to find something that will help you review or learn something new. iTunes U also features a note taking ability to take an extra step out of your studies and bring everything into one place.
Khan Academy offers one of the biggest resources to any student. With over 3,500 videos on any topic you can imagine, you will never have to scramble to find someone who can help you figure out a difficult topic ever again.
Subtitles with time breakdowns streamline your learning process as you are able to easily skip over the things you already know. You can even download videos straight from the app to watch offline. And yes, all of this is for free.
Developer: Khan Academy
With tons of source-fed eBooks, videos, podcasts, and more, Learnist is the place where you can learn how to do just about anything. Information posted in Learnist tends to be a little bit off-beat, but still brings about the point and is perfect if you’re looking to add a little bit of flair to a research paper or report.
Many students find flashcards to be an effective way to study. Quizlet offers an amazing outlet to create online flashcards, but unfortunately they have yet to develop an iPad app.
Luckily, there is QCards for Quizlet, which allows you to access all of your flashcard sets from the service. The app updates the sets itself as you edit them, keeping all of your notecards intact whenever you may need them.
Developer: Red 8 Ventures
Every high school student has to experience the world of chemistry, and luckily there is Elemints: Periodic Table to help you out. All you need to know about any element — atomic mass, melting and boiling points, classification — is at your fingertips.
But this app is more than just a periodic table. Elemints comes packed with tons of tools to help you visualize chemistry and make calculations, which makes your chemistry career just that much easier.
Developer: Mochi Development, Inc.
The universe is a big place, and without the proper tools, it is nearly impossible to learn even the slightest bit about it. That is where Luminos comes into the picture.
Luminos brings the night sky and everything you’d want to know about it straight to your iPad. 3D renderings of all of the constellations, moons, planets, and space bodies appear just where they would be in the actual sky. It is by far one of the most complete astronomy applications and provides a truly out of this world experience.
Developer: Wobbleworks LLC
Molecules is a simple application that shows you 3D models of any molecule. All you have to do is search the molecule you’d like to see, and you will be able to see both the ball and stick model and the space-filling visualization of the chemical.
Developer: Sunset Lake Software
Physics can very well be one of the hardest courses you take in high school, but luckily there are apps like Wolfram Physics I Course Assistant to help you.
The app covers every topic discussed in a standard high school physics class, and even has the capability of solving problems for each of the concepts. So feel better: that hypothetical force of gravity that comes from stressing over physics has been lifted off your shoulders.
Developer: Wolfram Alpha LLC
3D Cell Simulation and Stain Tool allows you to get up close and personal with the very formations of life on Earth. The 3D models will teach you everything you need to know about cells and their parts. Plus, you can stain cells in-app just as you would in the lab.
Developer: Invitrogen Corporation
Graphing is one of the most tedious processes a math student will encounter. However, graphing is made much easier with Graphing Calculator HD, which brings a powerful yet easy to use graphing tool straight to your iPad.
Graphing Calculator HD is able to graph functions, find exact coordinates of minimums, maximums, and roots of equations, compatible with logarithms and trig functions, as well as many other computations all for $1.99, which is much cheaper than any physical graphing calculator out there.
Developer: Appcylon LLC
isosceles+ is a great utility for geometry students. This app makes it easy to draw anything you may need to in geometry class, as your sketches snap in place to create a more accurate representation of bisectors, angles, and spirals.
Developer: Base 12 Innovations
MyScript Calculator is not your ordinary calculator. In fact, it is much more powerful, as it is driven by your handwriting. Because of this, it is perfect for complicated functions and problems that you wouldn’t know how to enter in a normal calculator. Log 12 base 5? You bet MyScript Calculator can solve it.
Developer: Vision Objects
Wolfram Calculus Course Assistant is a must-have for students taking AP Calculus AB or BC, or Calculus I or II.
The app is able to solve even the most difficult calculus equations in a matter of seconds, but also gives you guidance on how to solve the problems. It also comes packed with lessons so the likes of derivatives, integrals, and limits will never come as a challenge again.
Developer: Wolfram Alpha LLC
Since vocabulary is such a large part of English studies, Dictionary should be a staple app for all students. This app will help broaden your vocabulary not only with its dictionary functionality, but its thesaurus functionality and “Word of the Day” feature.
Developer: Dictionary.com, LLC
While vocabulary is important, grammar is arguably even more important. The problem? Grammar is one of the most boring things to learn in school. However, Grammar Up offers a solution by providing an easy way to get a grip on grammar.
Grammar Up walks through parts of speech, conditionals, infinitives & gerunds, among many other important grammatical topics. These topics are taught and assessed through multiple choice quizzes, which bring back detailed results of where you need to improve.
Developer: Eknath Kadam
Literary Analysis Guide is the reader’s bible. The app teaches you how to read all sorts of prose, poetry, and rhetoric by analyzing stylistic features of each of the categories.
Tons of literary terms are defined and used in context so that it is easy to understand how the author uses them to create meaning in the texts you are reading in class. And for you aspiring writers out there: it teaches you how to employ these tools to make your writing stronger.
Developer: Gatsby’s Light
While SAT vocabulary words are very important to know, learning them becomes mundane. But MindSnacks’ SAT Vocab app fixes this by teaching you words and their meanings through nine interactive mini games.
The games don’t solely teach you definitions, either. Usage, synonyms, context, spelling, and other things are all taught so you’re actually able to use the word properly and effectively.
Even the mention of Shakespeare makes some students’ stomachs drop. But Shakespeare in Bits by Mindconnex Learning is here to change that.
The app makes the Shakespeare experience much easier by breaking the plays down line-by-line and offering more modern definitions or interpretations of difficult words. The plot of the plays are dissected by scene, and each of the characters are analyzed in-app. Combined with fun animations and audio recordings, Shakespeare should be a breeze.
Price: Free, with various Shakespeare plays available to purchase for $14.99
Developer: Mindconnex Learning Ltd.
Atlas by Collins offers students a wealth of information through a series of beautiful maps.
Through nine different, detailed globes, including economic, development, and political globes, it is easy for students to get a grasp on the state of the world in lands far away and unknown to them.
Price: Free, with various maps available for purchase for $0.99
Developer: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
An integral part to success in social studies is staying up to date with current events. Luckily, Flipboard makes reading the news fun and simple. Its interactivity and intuitive layout make it easy for any student not only to absorb main headlines, but the world around them. You are also able to read things that interest you, as it is easy to bookmark your favorite sites in Flipboard.
Developer: Flipboard Inc.
Being one of the most highly acclaimed history institutions, Smithsonian is sure to have amazing content in their app on every area of history.
Smithsonian Channel comes packed with hundreds of quality videos on history, culture, and more to suit every social studies student’s needs.
Developer: Smithsonian Networks
Although the United States has only been around for less than 300 years, it has quite the rich history. US-History helps unpack the complexity of America’s years from colonization up until the new millenium.
Being highly interactive, US-History uses slideshows with maps, quizzes, and audio recordings in order to tell the stories of people and events that have helped shaped the country as it is known today.
Even if you don’t live in America and don’t study U.S. History, this app may still be helpful as the world was involved in many of the same affairs as the U.S.
This application is for the studiers of World History. World History Test Prep covers topics from early history, such as Ancient Rome and Greece, to topics as recent as the Cold War.
World History Test Prep is extremely helpful to students as it helps them remember the material covered through flashcards that have both text and audio. There are also multiple choice quizzes that truly gauge how well you know the material.
Developer: Pearson Education, Inc.
Google Translate is a must-have for the student studying a foreign language. Although it is not the most reliable of translators, it does the job well, especially if you’re in the situation where you just need to know how to say a word for a composition or are having trouble understanding a key word in a text.
Google Translate is able to translate into dozens of languages and even offers audio pronunciations for many of them. That being said, Google Translate may be your only reliable tool if you study a more obscure language in school, so it definitely should grace your iPad.
Developer: Google, Inc.
If you take a foreign language at school, the MindSnacks series has you covered. Really though: they offer apps that help you learn Spanish, French, Chinese, Japanese, Portuguese, Italian, and German, with many more to come.
Not only does the MindSnacks suite teach vocab, but also spelling and grammar in the respective language. Plus, the apps make learning a new language fun by teaching through a series of different mini games, which I have found very effective when learning a language.
Fun and Social
Students have to have some fun, too. Here are a few apps that can help make your down time, and even your study time, more enjoyable.
Netflix allows you to stream all of your favorite TV shows and movies right to your iPad, free of ads. You’ll never have to worry about missing an episode of Arrested Development or Breaking Bad ever again. Or planning a movie marathon. Or planning a TV show binge. The only thing you’ll have to worry about is that gut-wrenching moment when you have come to the final episode of that new series you fell in love with when you should have been studying for finals.
Price: Free; Netflix subscriptions start at $8/month
Developer: Netflix, Inc.
If you’re in need of tunes, Songza has you covered. With countless expertly made playlists that feature virtually every artist in your library, this app does not leave you disappointed.
Songza features playlists tailored for any occasion and for any taste in music. Nice, low key indie tunes for studying? Check. Pop hits for when you’re hanging out with friends? Check. If you want it, Songza‘s concierge has it.
Developer: Songza Media, Inc.
TED talks are world-renown, and for good reason. Every year, hundreds of people speak in places around the globe about ideas that inspire them—ideas that may make the world a better place.
TED talks have the power to suck you in for hours, and there are even speakers that are in high school. Although these talks are educational, they are done in such a captivating way that you actually want to watch and learn.
The best part? Procrastinating by watching TED talks brings a lot less guilt than procrastinating in other ways.
Developer: TED Conferences
Who doesn’t like YouTube? The video service has offered millions of videos for people of all interests since 2005, whether you like sports or humor or fashion or anything in between.
Plus, it’s the type of site you can find yourself shamelessly spending hours watching the latest viral video of, say, dogs speaking English or babies sliding oddly along a tile floor that everyone is talking about.
Developer: Google, Inc.
Yes, school is able to get stressful and crazy, but there is no need to get too worried with the wealth of education apps available right at your fingertips. Besides, these apps have the aptitude to make even your least favorite class interesting, as well as allow you to have the aptitude to excel in all areas of your studies.
The App Store is home to all of the apps mentioned above as well as thousands of more resource apps that can only help your studies. If you’re a student, teacher, or even an avid learner, post some of your favorite education apps in the comments down below!