5 ways the tablet has changed the way I do school

I recently asked +Spencer Apsley to share some of his thoughts about how using a tablet computer has changed his college experience. The enthusiasm of his response made me wish I were in college again just so I could get a taste of what he described. Rather than go back to school, I asked Spencer to share his thoughts here so I can live vicariously through him.

5 Ways My Tablet Has Changed the Way I Do School


by Spencer Apsley

I’ll be the first to admit that when tablets were first revealed to the public (a la iPad) I was skeptical. I distinctly remember thinking to myself: “Who would ever want to carry around a giant cell phone that doesn’t call people?” I didn’t see the appeal or the point. However, after spending some quality time with my new Nexus 7 I take everything back. Tablet’s are the best, they are the future, and they’ve completely changed the way I do school. Here’s what’s changed:

My back loves me.

Before I got my tablet my backpack usually contained the following items:

Laptop
Laptop charger
Several large textbooks
Notebooks
A few more textbooks
A sandwich

Yeah, I honestly don’t know how I made it to school carrying so much stuff. Nowadays my backpack contains just two items:

Nexus 7
A sandwich

It’s the best thing that’s ever happened to my back. Everything I used to carry around has been consolidated into one fantastic device. Soon after receiving the Nexus 7, I went online to see how many of my textbooks were available in ebook format. All but one of my books were available for download, all at significantly lower prices than if I were to buy a hardcopy of the book. The only book I couldn't download was Dinosaurs: The Textbook.

But who wouldn’t want to own a hard copy of this book?

If they ever release a sandwich making app on the Google Play store I won’t even need to take a backpack to school anymore. My spine has never been happier.

Oodles More Time

Ever since I’ve started using the Nexus 7, it feels like each day has an extra hour or two in it. I’m much more organized and make way better use of my time. The Google Calendar integration is seamless, and the way it can connect with my university’s learning suite is a beautiful thing. I always know when projects, tests, and other homework needs to be done.  

More Organized

Before the Nexus 7, my notebook looked like Mr. T had taken fistfuls of lined paper and crammed them into a folder in the most violent way possible.


“I pity the fool who has to use your notebook.”

It wasn’t organized, it always took me at least ten minutes to find anything (if I found it at all) and every paper I had was folded, bent, or crumpled in some way. One magical app on my Nexus has changed all that. What app is that?  Two words: +Evernote. (Okay, so really it’s just one word that sounds like two words.) Thanks to Evernote, I’m the most organized notetaker on the planet. I have separate notebooks for every class, I can record parts of lectures, add pictures and diagrams from online, draw my own pictures, and upload them all to the cloud to be accessed from anywhere. The most apparent consequence of this is that I actually find myself going back and looking at my notes more often. What a novel idea!  

More efficient studying

Studying has become super enjoyable. With just the swipe of my finger I can flip from the textbook, to my notes, to my professor’s lecture slides, and back to my textbook. And I can do it anywhere. Sitting on the couch, walking to school, standing in line. Even places that don’t have wifi. The Nexus 7 has a surprisingly robust offline mode and with a little bit of planning, all the resources I need to study are available at my fingertips at any given time. Studying has become fun again.
I’m almost as happy as this guy... almost.

More efficient free time

Relaxing is an important part of staying sane during college. The Nexus 7 has made my free time so much more enjoyable. Netflix and Youtube look absolutely gorgeous. There’s really nothing like curling up with my Nexus after a long, hard day and watching an episode of Downton Abbey. Wait, did I say Downton Abbey!? I meant Walking Dead... 

  
Seriously though, these two are more evil than a horde of zombies...

These days a good amount of my free time is spent communicating with my girlfriend in Germany. The Nexus has made the arduous task of maintaining a long distance relationship possible. Between Skype, google chat, instagram and facebook messenger, we always have some form of communication open between us. I even used my tablet to make calls to her cell phone for super cheap when her internet went down. I’m seriously considering making the Nexus 7 the best man at our wedding.

As you can see, the tablet has changed the way I do school. I totally understand if you’re skeptical of tablets; I was too.  But as the saying goes, “Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.” Once you start using a tablet, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without one.

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