Category Archives: Tips

There’s An App For That: College Studying

Filed under: All Things Tech, College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Megan Lehman BookRenter Blogger Biography





It is not a secret that technology can be a great resource for studying for any student.  What may be a secret to you, however, is which apps are really worth your time and are helpful.  There is so much out there and it can be extremely time consuming picking out just what works for you.

Check out these tested, tried, and true apps that have worked for me and can definitely work for you too!

1. Quizlet

Quizlet has been my saving grace during the last few semesters.  This app allows you to create flashcards for any topic.  Once your flashcard set is created, you have the option of turning the flashcards into a self-grading quiz or playing games that help you study.  What I love most about this app though, is that you can type the flashcards on your computer, and then open the app and study on your phone or tablet.  I like to have the website open during lecture and discussion so that I can type in the flashcards as I go and study them on the app as I walk to my next class. Did I mention that this app is free?

2. Complete Class Organizer

Complete Class Organizer does not help you study, but what it does is just as important.  Keeping track of everything you have to do between 4 or 5 classes, extracurricular activities, and work is hard enough.  Let this app be your personal organizer.  While I have not used this app personally, 3 of my closest friends swear by it and it is definitely on my list of apps to download for this spring semester.

3. Mindjet

Putting together any research project takes a lot of time.  Trying to figure out how to organize all that information can add even more time on to that. Mindjet (iTunes/Droid) helps you take all that information and organize it in a way that makes sense.  As I wrote my honors thesis last spring semester, I cannot express how valuable I found this app to be. If you are tackling any research papers or projects, this app is for you!

4. RefMe

That research work will most likely need a bibliography or reference sheet as well.  If you need a quick reference, use RefMe (iTunes/Droid). Simply scan the barcode of the book and the app creates the reference for you!  This app is pretty fantastic, if I do say so myself.

5. Grammarly

This amazing tool is both an app and a website.  Do you have a question on whether or not a sentence is grammatically correct? Or would you like to run your essay through a quick grammar check without heading over to the writing center? Grammarly is for you. I recommend this app to all college students at every level of writing. I have been using this for years and it has never let me down once.

As finals are quickly approaching, these apps should help you stay on top of studying and help you ace those exams! Good luck and happy studying!

Share any of your favorite study apps with us in a comment below!

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Fit-Feasting On Thanksgiving

Filed under: Food, Health & Fitness, Seasonal Celebrations, Tips - Angelina
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Bailey Buckingham BookRenter Blogger Biography

This time of the year is known as the time that ruins your diet. With the holidays, great meals, and colder weather – everyone seems to gain weight. Usually we don’t worry about gaining the weight until bikini body season. For the past couple of years, I’ve learned some tricks to staying as healthy as I can during Thanksgiving and this time of year so that afterwards I don’t feel sluggish and gross.

Here are some suggestions to how to stay healthy during Thanksgiving:

1. Family Fitness Activity

If you’re spending the holiday with family, like most of us do, the easiest way to get a “workout” in is to involve the whole family. For two years, my family and I have participated in the Turkey Trot 5K races the morning of Thanksgiving. If your town doesn’t offer something like that, then do a flag football or volleyball competition. Incorporate some sort of competition or game that gets the family going so you can burn some extra calories and make some holiday memories while doing it!

2. Cook Some Of The Meal

Talk to whoever is “in charge” of Thanksgiving and see what you can make yourself for the meal. I’ve already talked to my grandma about making a pie, and some side dishes this year. This puts you in control of the recipe, so you can use healthier options when cooking!

3. Smaller Plate Trick

So you don’t offend the cook, talk to them beforehand, but instead of using a big plate like everyone else, use a smaller plate. That way you will have a full plate, and smaller portions, so you trick yourself into thinking you’ve eaten a lot. This will help you to prevent all of that gluttonous overeating.

4. Commercial Break

My family watches football on Thanksgiving as a tradition. When there is a commercial break, I use it as an opportunity to get away from the TV and walk around. If you’re in a comfortable family setting, do jumping jacks or push-ups between commercials to get your blood flowing!

5. Don’t Discourage Yourself

Don’t be upset because you ate mash potatoes, or if you ate one too many cookies. IT HAPPENS! If you eat too many cookies, walk around the house and burn some extra calories. Don’t let this celebration with your family turn into you freaking out about calories all day.

Remember to enjoy yourself, and your family’s company. Don’t stress about calories all day, but be try to do some fit-feasting this Thanksgiving to help!

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Studying Strategies For Finals

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Cameron Tranchemontagne BookRenter Blogger Biography

This time of the semester is usually crazy with college classes. Between professors cramming in material at the end of the semester, to team projects, and loads of homework and tests (including finals), it’s no wonder students can be burnt out this time of year. However, this is a very crucial time to stay focused and make sure you carry through the best you can to continue to learn and get good grades.

Have successful studying session for tests and finals with these recommendations:

1. Work In Increments

You should break up your class and homework assignments you’re working on and accomplish them one piece at a time. This makes it easy to track your progress and keep up your morale by accomplishing a series of mini-goals. You should also make sure you take breaks in between each segment. Experts recommend about 15 minutes of break time to every 1 hour of studying to not exhaust your brain power. Whether you decide to eat a quick snack, go outside, or socialize for your break, just make sure you take that time for yourself (and then get back to studying).

2. Stick To A Schedule

You should plan specific times to study and stick to your schedule. This makes you more accountable to actually study. After a few weeks of this, studying will become just another habit in your regular routine.

3. Set Goals

Don’t start studying until you have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish, such as to learn more about a certain topic. This will keep you focused on the things you need to work the most on as you study and can help you plan out where you are spending your time as you study.

4. Limit Distractions

First, you should find a quiet place where you won’t be distracted much by your surroundings. You should also be wary of digital distractions. You may need your laptop or tablet to study, but limit your social media and web browsing. You can also tell your friends not to bother you when you’re studying, or just turn off the notifications on your phone.

5. Ask For Help

Much of the work you will accomplish “in the real world” will come from collaborating with others. For this reason, and for the sake of your sanity, you should feel comfortable reaching out to other students in the class if you are stuck on a problem or topic. Or you can even reach out to the professor. By communicating your difficulties, not only will you likely receive help, but if a lot of people are also having trouble with the topic, the professor may be willing to alter or review the material to fit the needs of the class.

Remember, everyone studies differently for what works for them. It may take some time to find out the best method for you if you haven’t found it yet. If you have found your ultimate study method, share with us what it is in a comment below!

Good luck studying!

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Breaking The Habit: Procrastination

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Bailey Buckingham BookRenter Blogger Biography

Procrastination is something that hits so many college students, and once you get in that pattern, it is so hard to break. I know, because I am the former queen of procrastination. For me, it started in high school and has carried on into every year of college, except for this one. This year is my last year, and I had an awakening moment before classes started, when I realized that I’ve never accomplished anything academically in college. That isn’t who I am, and I want to leave with my name on the dean’s list. I had to make major adjustments to do this, but here are the top three things that have stopped my procrastination and have me at all A’s this semester, with 18 hours of classes.

1. Use A Planner

This is number one because having a planner is something that I plan to continue to use even after college. The older I’ve gotten, the more important it’s been to remember weddings, baby showers, anniversaries, etc. I can’t remember all of that on my own, especially with classes. I carry it with me in my purse, and when a date comes up that I need to remember, it immediately goes in. It helps me keep track of the mass amounts of homework I have every week. This will also help you prioritize everything too.

2. Schedule Homework Time

Scheduling when I do my homework has been a huge success for me this semester. My work schedule changes every week, so every time I get my schedule, I take out my planner and decide when I’ll be knocking out my homework. Writing it down gives me a bigger sense of accountability.

3. Make School A Priority

You may roll your eyes at this but, I spent three years in college making everything else a priority, never school. I made decent grades, but my attendance was horrible and I was doing my homework last minute every time because I didn’t put school before anything. Word to the wise, don’t wait until your senior year like I did to realize how easy school can be if you just prioritize it.

At the end of the day, these tips will work for you, if you are willing to make an effort. It took me so long to decide I needed tools to help me stay on track. It’s never too late to get your priorities in order, and as a twenty-three year old senior, I hope you can at least learn from my mistakes!

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Don’t Fall Behind: Keeping Up With Classes

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Sylwia Baran BookRenter Blogger Biography





One of the greatest things about college is the new found freedom. We no longer have our parents nagging us to make sure that our homework is done and that we studied for the math test – it’s amazing! And yet, it’s not so amazing. We soon learn that support system that was pushing us to perform well in school is greatly missed and a lot of students struggle to keep up with their workload when those daily reminders are no longer in place. That is why it is so important to learn how to properly manage your time and develop skills that will ensure you don’t fall behind in your classes.

Keep up with your classes with these simple tips:

1. Schedule Study Time

When you’re in college, you have a lot more going on in your life than just your courses. Most students also have part-time jobs, extracurricular activities, family they like to visit, and maybe even a social life to tend to once in a while. That is why it’s important to set aside a certain amount of time each day to study and do homework. Plan out a couple of hours each day that you will dedicate solely to school work – and stick to the schedule!

2. Stay Ahead of the Syllabus

The syllabus is there for a reason – use it! No one is saying that you have to do all of the assigned readings for the semester in the first week of classes, but keep an eye out for what’s to come. If you find that you have some extra time, start doing the readings for the following week. If you know that you will have a big assignment towards the end of the semester, start thinking of ideas and even do some light research for it. Staying ahead of the deadlines takes a lot of stress out of the college experience.

3. Show up

This may seem silly to some of you, but many students enter college with the idea that you don’t have to show up to all your classes to do well. That new found freedom I mentioned earlier plays a big role here. It’s much easier to stay in your big comfy warm bed for a few extra hours rather than going to class at 8:00AM in the snow – believe me, I think there’s a consensus on that. But missing even one day of class can be really detrimental to your grade. Especially when you only have that class once a week, there is probably a ton of material that you’re missing. No matter how comfortable your bed is, get up and get to your classes!

If you still find yourself struggling to keep up with the heavy course load, talk to someone in your school. Colleges offer tutoring and help with dealing with these types of problems; use these resources!

What’s your secret to keeping up with your classes? Tell us in a comment below.

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