August 24, 2015 andrea

CWTech Toolkit: College Edition
(5 Web Tools for Students)

This isn’t your typical list of book rental sites and study material.. This is a list of real, practical web tools for college students. And the best part? They are all FREE!

1. Google Drive: the perfect tool for group projects

I didn’t start using Google Drive until after college, but I wish I would have known about it then! It’s perfect for group projects.

Google Drive makes it easy to share documents and edit the same files. It’s convenient to be able to share files between your group, but I want to focus in on being able to edit the same document. (Side note: this document can be a regular text document, slides, spreadsheet, etc.) Once someone who has a gmail address creates the document, they can share the link to it with anyone they want (even people who don’t have gmail) by typing in their e-mail address. Once everyone has the link, they can open the document and any changes will be seen by everyone. Even cooler, if 2 or more people are looking at the document at the same time, Google will show you who is looking at it and where exactly their cursor is on the document. You can also make comments to your group right there in the document. It’s great.

“How do I sign up?”
You can make a Google account here – Once you sign up, go to Google drive and you can start creating and sharing documents!

2. Dropbox: the perfect tool for sharing documents

I know I just said Google Drive is a convenient way to share files, but if you’re trying to send anything “big”, Dropbox may be the better option.

Dropbox is basically a virtual jump drive. They give you 2 GB of space with their free plan, which should be plenty of room. In college, I used Dropbox mostly for sending albums of pictures. It’s easy to upload to Dropbox. Once you have a folder ready to send, all you have to do is type in the receiver’s e-mail address and they’ll get a link to your folder.

“How do I sign up?”
Follow this link to their home page sign-up form –

3. Skimm: the perfect tool for keeping up

Another web tool that I didn’t find until after college, but wish I would have had it sooner.

Most college students constantly have something going on, and that doesn’t leave much time for keeping up with what’s going on in the news. I’ll be honest. Most of my news in college came from Facebook posts and Buzzfeed. Which at least kept me decently up to date, but I was mostly behind on what was happening in the world. I just didn’t have time to watch the news or read through all kinds of articles. I still don’t make enough time for it, which is why Skimm is great. Skimm is a daily e-mail newsletter that gives you nice summaries of news stories. Even better, it’s written as though you’re reading an e-mail from a friend – opposed to some article with big words that you don’t have the time to look up.

“How do I sign up?”
You can sign up here – – enjoy your daily Skimm!

4. Spotify Web Player: the perfect tool for your music

I know!! Spotify isn’t free. But, the web player is! If you do a lot of work from your laptop, that makes Spotify Web Player the perfect tool for listening to music.

This explanation is purely my opinion, but I have my reasons. First, there are SO many pre-made playlists. One of my pet peeves is starting on a project and then having to pause because my song ended and I have to go start a new one. Or, picking a bad playlist and having to pause to skip annoying songs. Thankfully, Spotify has some pretty great playlists. My personal favorites are the Discover Weekly, Afternoon Acoustic, and Praise & Worship. But if you aren’t into those, there are pages and pages of more for you to pick from. All kinds of music. Second, you have the option to make your own playlist. When you come across a song you really like, you can add it and make a playlist with all of your favorites. This is all in the free Spotify Web Player.

“How do I sign up?”
Go here – – and start listening!

5. LinkedIn: the perfect tool for your future

I know it’s not as fun as Facebook or Twitter, but having a LinkedIn profile is important for your future career and business contacts.

LinkedIn is the “largest professional network”. It’s important to go ahead and make your profile in college so that you can start collecting business contacts. You never know what kinds of contacts you will need in your future! Don’t be afraid to add someone who comes to speak to your class or a business-person you meet just around your college’s town. Besides collecting valuable contacts, LinkedIn is a place where you can start your resume. There are plenty of job seekers on LinkedIn, so it’s important to make yourself look the best and add all of your important qualities and experience!

“How do I sign up?”
Sign up on their home page – – and start building your profile!

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