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5 Free Study Tools and Tricks for Every Student

I wish I was fifteen years younger… when I see the helpful tools that are available to my youngest sister, I’m so jealous! Back in my days, when we wanted to look something up, we had to go through this old drawer with thousands of tabs, then search for the book, and then look through the book for information. For research we would look through encyclopedias that were printed 20 years earlier and with severely out-of-date information and references. When it came to studying, we were on our own… no helpful assistance unless we hired a tutor.

This was our "Google"
This was our “Google”

Today’s students have it so much easier! They can find a word’s definition in a split instant, research for a paper within minutes, have information available to them everywhere they go, and use tools to study in preparation for tests or to understand lessons.

With that in mind, check out five of these amazingly easy tools that students can enjoy online for free:

Free flashcards

Remember painstakingly creating dozens of flashcards to study for a test? Today, you no longer need to waste your time or paper… the flashcards are already made for you and are ready for easy use. Cram.com probably has the biggest concentration of flashcards (numbering over 18 millions) and they are FREE for use. There are flashcards for hundreds of topics from languages, history, science, technology, medicine, and the list goes on… Users can submit their own flashcards and use them to study, all the while sharing them with the community. They can even be used on your mobile.

They even have fun game options!
They also have fun game options!

Free video lessons and guides

Not understanding a lesson in your physics class? Why… no problem! Just head to YouTube and look for a video that explains whatever stumps you. Chances are that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of videos about any subject you’re studying. There are entire channels that are devoted to lessons – a lot of which have been created by teachers. It may not be your typical fun and entertaining YouTube video, but you’re basically getting free tutoring so appreciate it!

Get the answer with Google

This is one that I often do when I help my sister with her homework. Sometimes I just don’t know the answer (I’ve been out of high school for 11 years – give me a break!) so I’ll copy the question to Google, place it between quotation marks, and pow! I get the answer. Google doesn’t solve it for you (although it may sometimes surprise you and do so) but if you don’t know the answer, another student at some point didn’t either and she/he asked about it online, say in a forum or Yahoo! answers. Some kind soul may have replied and provided an answer or explanation.

Look for your book online or check for a website address in your book

When my sister was failing math and needed a crash course on numerous chapters of her book for the final, I looked for a PDF version for myself to help guide her. Instead, I ended up finding a hidden gem – a concise lesson by lesson video tutorial provided by the publishers. This was a godsend… one look at the videos and my sister understood what she had been unable to learn from her own math teacher. The videos also require that the viewer answer questions and solve problems in order to move forward. They were great – she passed her final test!

lessons
A snapshot of one of the publisher’s lessons

There are websites providing textbook’s answers

I can’t express my envy about this enough. I just remember how we had to figure it out on our own, cry, and then turn in incomplete homework… Today, you can head to a website like Slader, look for your textbook, and if all goes well, they will have a concise and organized list of every problem and question in your book with answers and explanations on how to solve them. People can vote on the explanations and answers, so if one is down voted, it will be removed as an incorrect answer.

graph
Breaking down the explanation and answer for a question.


Have you used any other great studying tools? Let us know!

About Ronnie E.

Ronnie is the frugal Latina of the group. Hailing from the beautiful Andes Mountains in Bolivia, she lives and breathes frugality. She loves to figure out how to spend less money and takes on the challenge of finding great deals and cheaper options every day.

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  • Lois Alter Mark

    Oh, I kind of miss that card catalog! But, yes, research of any kind is way easier now!

  • Thanks for the tips! I love the card catalog photo!!

  • malia p

    This is so true. Kids have it so much easier these days!