Reviews, Student Life

Organized (Educationally Speaking)

By Malinda Gray, Family Care Office UTM Outreach and Communications Coordinator

As a parent of three children under 10 I don’t have a lot of opportunities where I can say I’m organized.  I’ve succumbed to the fact that they will never, EVER, use a toothbrush holder.  My laundry hamper has three compartments for darks, whites, and brights but that dream has been abandoned. Frankly I’m lucky if only clothes are put in it!  My partner and I realize that we’re outnumbered and talk about the good old days when we cleaned up our apartment once a week and it stayed that way for DAYS.

However, since education is my mid-life crisis, this is where I excel at organization. I have a study area that is forbidden to children. This is where my pre-kids OCD persona once again manifests itself.  My school binder is organized by class where my notes are chronologically in order.  A huge tool in my organization is my smartphone that has apps that help me study, check my school schedule, and notifies me of posted grades.

Below are the websites/phone apps that have become my personal, virtual study group.

StudyBlue 2Do you like to make flashcards?  I don’t, well I would but buying all the 3x5s and then keeping them together is unwieldy at best. Plus if my children find them I’ll be having an adult scavenger hunt. This is where StudyBlue is a timesaver.  You enter in your personal flashcards on the website and it will sync with the app on your phone.  It will also create quizzes for you based on the information you provided.  I use the free version but there are additional features you can subscribe too.


Do you like schedule organizers?  I will dutifully fill them out at the beginning of the year, lose it, and then end up checking online every day for assignments, exams, etc…  My solution is the Timetable app.  You can enter in your schedule, the class information, when a paper is due, exam dates, and it will display what your week at school looks like.  It even tells you how many days you have before a paper is due.  It hasn’t made me procrastinate any less before starting an assignment but at least I know what’s ahead.

BlackboardMy last app is not really an unknown app but one that is very useful and it is Blackboard which is included in UTM Tuition and it is the mobile site that will connect you with U of T’s Learning Portal.  There you can access your courses and materials that the instructor has uploaded.  It can even send you a notification when grades are posted which could lead to an unintended verbal response in a public setting.

Apologies to any iPhone users as links are too GooglePlay since I have an Android phone.  StudyBlue and Blackboard are available for Apple products and there are alternatives to the Timetable app.

Happy Studying and PLEASE comment and spread awareness of any apps or websites that are helping you in your university career.