Wellbeing and productivity apps to help you manage study stress

There are plenty of wellbeing and productivity apps out there to help you with studying. But which ones will be the most helpful when it comes to managing the whole study and exam experience? We’ve done the research for you. Give these apps a try and see what works for you.

Young man using phone and drinking coffee

For planning your study schedule

Making and sticking to a study schedule is a surefire way to keep on top of your studies and lower those stress levels. These study apps can help you to get into a good routine and stay organised. 

  • Todoist is a task management app that helps you to organise your study schedule and get stuff done. With a straightforward interface that’s easy on the eye, it’s helpful for making to-do lists, setting reminders, and organising tasks by priority and due date. The basic version of the app is free.

  • Google Calendar is a free calendar app that helps you to schedule events, set reminders and organise your time. Try creating study blocks in your calendar as well as breaks to keep you motivated.

For managing distractions and taming screen use

It’s hard to study if you’re checking your phone every couple of minutes. Use these apps to help minimise distractions and study more effectively. 

  • Forest: Focus for productivity helps you to stay focused by planting a virtual tree that dies if you leave the app to check your phone. You set a timer for how long you want to focus and your tree grows if you stick to the time. You can also use this app to experiment with using the ‘Pomodoro technique’ of studying for 25 minutes and then taking a five-minute break. This app is $5.99 on the App Store or free (with ads) on Google Play.

  • Screen Time (iOS) / Digital Wellbeing (Android) are the free, built-in features on iOS and Android devices that help you to monitor and manage your screen time. They provide insights into how you use your phone, set limits for specific apps and schedule downtime (in which certain apps are blocked). 

For learning and study tips

Are your study notes a mess? Worried you’re not going to remember the content of what you’re studying? These productivity apps can help with that.

  • Evernote helps you to organise your study notes on the go. With rich formatting tools, you make your notes look exactly how you want them to look when it’s time to revise (or you can use a template). You can also use their search tool to find exactly what you need from your notes, even handwritten notes and pictures. The basic version of the app is free.

  • Quizlet is a study app that can create digital flashcards, practice tests, quizzes and study games to help you review and memorise information. The basic version of the app is free.

For keeping focused

Music and sound can be a really helpful study tool for both focusing and staying calm. These focus apps have plenty of options for you to check and see what works for you. 

  • Tide combines time management with soothing sounds to help you stay focused and relaxed. There’s an immersive focus timer, a library of sounds, professional meditations and productivity statistics. The basic version of the app is free.

  • Headspace is well known for its meditation and mindfulness tools. But it also has some amazing focus features, including playlists curated by the likes of John Legend, Hans Zimmer and Erykah Badu. You can check out Headspace’s entire library with a free trial before pricing starts at $19.99 a month, or $91.99 a year.

  • Focus@will combines neuroscience and music to offer a range of focus sounds and tunes designed to boost productivity and block out distractions. The basic version of this app is free.

For health and wellbeing

Study isn’t everything – it’s important to keep your mind and body healthy, too. Try one of these wellbeing apps if you’re after a short mindfulness session, a quick physical break, a focus playlist or some quality shut-eye.

  • Insight Timer offers thousands of free guided meditations, music tracks and talks to help reduce stress and boost relaxation. Try searching ‘study break’ or ‘short break’ for meditations intended specifically for this purpose.

  • Sleep Cycle is a versatile app that helps you to track your sleep. It also has an education library, quick recordings on sleep-related topics, sleep sounds and stories, as well as exercises for daytime relaxation that can help you prepare for better sleep. The basic version of this app is free. 

  • Smiling Mind is a free Australian mindfulness app with guided meditation and mindfulness sessions tailored to different groups, including high school and university students. There’s even a module called ‘Study’, with meditations designed to help you manage stress and overwhelm.  The app also includes programs in a number of different Aboriginal languages like Kriol, Ngaanyatjarra and Pitjantjatjara. The additional language programs are located in ‘Explore’, then ‘Other Languages’.

  • 7 Minute Workout is a super-popular app that offers exactly what it promises – seven-minute workouts. From pilates to cardio, choose one of their workouts and get your body moving. The basic version of this app is free.

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