I have been surfing for colleges for my sons. Ok, they are 11 and 13, but I want to know what the options are and how we can prepare them. On the University of Oregon Facebook page, a post says, “Studying Pad rocks!” Good enough, I download the app on my ipad to check it out.
Studyingpad is built for the ipad. It bills itself as “a complete organizer for your day to day student duties.” It says it can manage your “whole academic life using features like media rich notebooks, full integration with the Ipad calendar, daily class schedules, and much more!” It declares that for college and post-grads pages styling is possible, but for high school and younger, it is more basic. It states that the information I provide is for personalization purposes only and to facilitate future communication with the school.
On the registration page, they want your name, birthdate (I always give a fake one) email, education grade, semester, school name, and student id number (that’s not going to happen either).
The tutorial is visual. There are arrows saying tap this to do that. It is simple and effective. There is the expected information like schedules and profiles. In the notebooks you can create documents, draw freehand, add pictures, and then email the document as a pdf. Finally! Imagine the paper costs that could be saved.
At the end of the tutorial, there is an explanation about the origin of the app. It was created by a parent who thought that slugging 30 pounds of books to school, plus additional paper and an organizer was inefficient and archaic, as do I. The free version includes 2 notebooks. My sons would need about 4 notebooks each. To add 2 notebooks, it costs $4.99, 4 notebooks are $5.99, 8 notebooks are $7.99, and to add a personalized cover will cost you 99 cents for each cover.
In the future, the app will include the ability for the school to interact with the student. I would like to see a collaboration notebook, where multiple students and a librarian or teacher could work together on a project. To truly be effective, a teacher would have to originate this app as a required method of communication and work for his class. I don’t think this app is ready to completely replace the 30 lbs of materials in my boys’ backpack, but it’s a good start.