Person holding iphone looking at their apps
Person holding iphone looking at their apps

11 Best Study Apps For Students

Find out how to boost your productivity, nail exam revision and take notes like a pro with our list of the best study apps.

Getting to grips with studying can feel like an assignment in itself. With so many distractions flying about (we see you endlessly scrolling TikTok), staying focused and avoiding procrastination is a constant battle. 

The benefit of living in a digital world is that there is an app for EVERYTHING. Including your study habits. So whether you need help with exam revision, need to organise your notes efficiently, or just need to become more productive, there’s an app for that. 

Using these on their own or combining them with your other revision techniques can make the world of difference to your studies. We’ve narrowed down 11 of the very best apps to make finding your perfect digital study buddy a breeze. 

In this article:

Best apps for boosting productivity 

The first hurdle is finding the motivation, right? There’s so much going on at uni, you’re experiencing new things every day so finding the time to study can sometimes slip in your priority list (psst: it’s what you’re there for). Sometimes we need a little help to sit down and focus on what you need to tick off your to-do list. These apps are great for boosting your productivity and helping you focus on the task at hand.

Notion app on iphone

1. Notion

Cost: Free (with upgrades available from £7 a month)

Available on: iOS and Android

Notion is a powerful app to help you organise your life. With basically every feature you can think of to help you keep track of your studies, including calendar management, to-do lists, budgeting spreadsheets and assignment tracking. It’s completely customisable so you can make it as complex or as simple and straightforward as you want. Notion is a great app to stay productive as you can have everything related to your course in one place, and you can tweak it to work on a system that keeps you on task. 

If you need to work on group projects, you can invite people to collaborate on your Notion workspace so everyone is on the same page. 

2. Be Focused

Cost: Free (with option to upgrade to Pro from £1.99 a month)

Available on: iOS

For all you Pomodoro technique fans out there, Be Focused is the one for you. Perfect if you find revising for exams stressful, Be Focused is a timer to help you split up individual tasks into manageable chunks. You can set the timer to however long you want, then it gives you breaks so that you don’t get overwhelmed by a long study session. 

There’s also the option to block out certain apps while you’re in focus mode, so that you don’t get distracted. What’s really cool about Be Focused is that you can delve into the statistics about your study times to find the perfect productivity point for you so you learn how long you tend to concentrate best for over time. 

3. Cite It Now

Cost: Free (in-app purchases)

Available on: iOS

Referencing. Need we say more? The bane of your essay writing, especially when you can lose marks for referencing incorrectly. Cite It Now supports MLA and APA referencing, so you can scan the barcode of the book you need to reference to automatically generate a citation. 

You can even collate your references into different projects so that you can organise depending on the assignment that you’re working on. 

For other reference generators, even AI tools can be useful to help speed up your referencing, but it’s always worth double-checking.

4. Forest

Cost: Free (with option to purchase coins in the app)

Available: iOS and Android

Another focus timer for the eco-friendly student, Forest is a timer that when you set it, it plants a virtual tree. Your tree will grow the longer that you focus on your work, and if you give up, your tree will wither. As you grow more and more trees you can even create your own forest in the app, adding a super fun gaming element to your studies.

It’s a fun way to motivate you to avoid leaving the app to follow other distractions. What’s even better is that you have the opportunity to buy virtual coins to plant real trees. So far, Forest has planted nearly 2 million trees. 

Person holding iphone looking at their apps

Best note-taking apps for students

Even if you’re a wizard at taking notes, some lectures you might find it impossible to keep up, or capture that perfect diagram that sums up EXACTLY what your lecturer is talking about. So these apps are designed to make it easier for you to capture the essential information you need for your course. 

5. Dragon Anywhere

Cost: Free (upgrades from £10.99 per month)

Available on: iOS and Android

Recording your lectures is a great idea not to miss out on detail, but they do require you to listen back to them, which is where you could find time wasted. Dragon Anywhere translates audio recordings into text so you can collate your notes quickly. 

It’s a little on the pricier side to keep up with the subscription, but if you’re someone that struggles to take notes, it could be a worthwhile investment. 

6. Microsoft Lens

Cost: Free

Available on: iOS and Android

Now this is a game changer for note-takers. Can’t keep up with trying to trace a super fancy diagram? With Microsoft Lens you can quickly snap a picture and it will store it as well as remove the background so you have the perfect picture. It can be a real time saver and it means you don’t miss any important information during lectures if you’re busy trying to copy down a diagram.

You can also use it to scan text in a hurry so you have it all in one place. 

7. Oxford Dictionary

Cost: Free

Available on: iOS and Android

This needs no introduction, the Oxford Dictionary is the OG for all your weird and wonderful word look-ups. There’s no judgement here, you’re at uni to learn about a whole lot of new topics, so that means there will be some new words you want to add to your lexicon but need to actually understand what they mean first! You might not find classic uni jargon in the dictionary but we’ve got you covered

The Oxford Dictionary app means you can take it on the go so you’re not having to lug around a hardback with you or even trail it round the library. 

Best apps for exam revision

If there’s one thing that sums up stress it’s exam revision. It’s always good to remain level-headed but cramming knowledge into your brain can be overwhelming, understandably. Luckily, there are some apps out there to help you with revision, using time-tested techniques like active recall and mind-mapping, but digitally. 

8. Anki

Cost: Free

Available on: iOS and Android 

Anki is an app where you can create flashcards for revision from the comfort of your phone. These are SO handy if you want to revise out and about but don’t want to carry around physical cards with you. 

One of the benefits of Anki is that you can even embed images, audio or video in your flashcards too so that you can add as much or as little information to your flashcards as possible. You can also set the difficulty rating when you’re ready to level up. 

Interested in using active recall with flashcards? We have a whole post on how to revise with flashcards

9. Coggle

Cost: Free (with upgrades available on the app)

Available on: iOS and Android

Another example of an app that has digitised revision techniques is Coggle. If you love a mind map, then Coggle is for you. You can create interactive mind-maps that people can collaborate on, perfect for group projects or if you need a second opinion. 

They even have a list of templates so you can jazz up the designs to make them nicer to revise from, and you can add images to illustrate your mind-maps. 

Mind-mapping right up your street? You can find out why revision using mind-maps is scientifically proven to help you learn on our blog. 

10. StudyBunny

Cost: Free (in-app purchases)

Available on: iOS and Android

Now we’ve spoken about making a study session into a gaming experience in other apps, and StudyBunny is just like that. Your bunny will earn carrots while you study, and the more carrots you have, you can unlock rewards. 

This is essentially another Pomodoro technique that uses a timer to help you focus during your revision, but adding the extra element means you will actually want to head to the library! 

Headspace app on iphone

11. Headspace

Cost: £7.99 (with student discount) plus a free trial

Available on: iOS and Android

There’s no getting around it, exams can be really tough. Revising is all well and good but sometimes you need to switch off and take a minute to relax. That’s where Headspace comes in. With mindfulness at the core of what they offer, it can help you create healthy habits to support your mental health while you’re studying.

It’s not a free app, but you do get an exceptional 85% student discount on Headspace plans with Student Beans which means it works out at just £7.99 a year. A small price to pay for a little bit of mental health support. 

For more tech student discounts, head to Student Beans.