Digital tools that will make your academic life easier
published on 10.02.21
Professionally presenting a paper, editing videos, expanding the bibliography of work, citing the sources of your academic article… All this, which is part of the daily life of students (but also of the professional world), can be much easier with a series of tools:
Many teachers ask their students to find additional bibliographies for their subjects, whether it is to broaden their knowledge of a particular topic, to do assignments, or to write their academic papers. Where can we find specialized bibliography, apart from a library? Bibliographic portals. These portals give us access to journals, articles, books… Some examples of very useful portals are:
- Google Scholar: This portal gives us access to many articles and books with just a few clicks. Simply enter your keywords in the Google Scholar search engine as if you were searching in Google itself and an endless number of results will appear.
- Dialnet: This portal is especially useful if you are looking for Spanish-language academic articles. It has a database, bibliographic alert services, a virtual newspaper library, and a repository.
- Jstor: This digital library was created in 1995 and has become one of the largest specialized repositories in the world. To access the content, you need to register on their website.
Citing the sources
When we do a piece of work, it is very important to cite the sources from which we have obtained the information. This can be a difficult and time-consuming task if we do it manually. However, some tools make this process much easier:
- Citethisforme: This is an automatic bibliography generator. It also offers the possibility of citing in different formats: APA, Chicago, Harvard, MLA, etc. By inserting the data of the document you want to cite, the web automatically generates the citation in the format previously indicated.
Dealing with PDFs
For people without Adobe Acrobat DC editing PDFs is impossible. Filling in a PDF means printing it out, filling it in by hand, and scanning it. The same goes for signing. Removing pages or merging pages in PDFs is also unthinkable. Still, some tools make it much easier.
- Ilovepdf.com: calls itself the “online tool for PDF lovers” and offers a lot of options. For example, it allows you to merge PDFs, compress them, convert them from PDF to Word, PowerPoint, or Excel (or the other way around), sign them and even put page numbers.
To make videos quickly, but with good results, you don’t need to be a Premiere Pro specialist. Several online platforms can help you edit videos easily.
- Powtoon: This is a very intuitive platform for editing animated presentations or videos. This software has many predefined elements, as well as allowing you to drag and drop all kinds of content.
For preparing presentations, there are alternatives to PowerPoint that offer even more professional results.
- Canva: This platform offers templates that will give a very professional touch to your presentations. It also has a bank of images, videos, gifs, and all kinds of shapes. It not only serves to create presentations but also has many templates to create cards, posters, images for social networks, or even CVs.
Creating quality infographics
Although Word allows us to make simple graphics, some tools can greatly increase the quality of infographics.
- Infogram: Infogram is another tool that offers many templates created by designers. If you register on the website, you only have to adapt your content to the templates to get very professional infographics. Like Canva, it also allows you to create slideshows, posters, or social media posts.