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Aiming for Efficiency? Try These 5 Tools!

  Making the choice to pursue your education is undoubtedly a rewarding decision; however it is a decision that will require persistence, sacrifice and focus. So how can you manage school and work all while trying to stay sane AND be productive? Utilizing tools that help your productivity and efficiency will not only benefit your education, but your future career as well. The following tools are available on your mobile device or computer:   1.     Procrastinator – This tool essentially FORCES you to focus, which might be a great tool for those who tend to get easily distracted from their schoolwork. This is a free application that turns your computer into the ultimate distraction-free zone. Perhaps you want to work from 5-7pm without distraction to knock out that school project, but you are tempted to check out what is happening on Facebook or Twitter. Procrastinator will prohibit you from visiting any websites that may distract you for the amount of time that you designate as uninterrupted work time. No longer will you be trying to write that paper or finish that online quiz and be tempted with status updates or re-tweets. Procrastinator keeps you focused and working on the task at hand, and if you try to access a site that you have blocked, you will get a stern but friendly reminder to “get back to work!”   2.     Evernote – You’ll wonder how you ever lived without this application once you install it! We consume so much information daily that it is inevitably hard to recall the amazing and useful information we acquire. That is where Evernote comes in! Evernote will capture your information from a variety of sources (webpage, text message, audio clip or photo) and index it! The Evernote app will even retrieve the information for you. So rather than covering your desk with notes, losing paper in the shuffle and trying to remember those handy web links for your project, let Evernote handle that for you! The best news – Evernote is even available as a FREE app, so it is even easier to get organized and in sync.   3.     Remember the Milk –  Do you make list upon list? Do you jot things down throughout your day and create to-do lists? Remember the Milk is an online and mobile app that allows you to create lists in the easiest and most user-friendly way possible. Remember the Milk is a straightforward app that keeps your to-dos and lists in the forefront of your mind versus allowing them to slip your mind throughout the day. This app is also accessible from a variety of devices, which is perfect for the on-the-go student. If you create a list on your home computer, you can access that same list from your mobile phone while you out and about.   4.     LastPass – Between your student passwords, online bill-pay interfaces and passwords for email, your head is probably full of usernames and passwords. It is nearly impossible to keep everything straight! However, LastPass is a great tool for the safe storing of all your usernames and passwords for the various accounts that you manage. Creating a secure username and password is also vital to protecting your identity and safety online, and one of the great features of LastPass is the ability for the site to generate safe and unique usernames and passwords for you! Rather than racking your brain and scouring old emails for login credentials, save time and energy by using this all-in-one password keeper!   5.     Awesome Screen Shot – You don’t have to fumble your way through Photoshop to incorporate photos from the web into your project or blog post. Awesome Screen Shot allows you to capture what you are viewing on your screen and save it to a specified location in the file format of your choosing! This free application is extremely easy to use and allows you to capture free-form or rectangular images, full screen or partial.