Study Tips

9 Best iPad Apps for Students

February 22, 2023

Looking for the best iPad apps for your new iPad? 

Getting an iPad for college is now almost an essential. There are simply so many iPad apps nowadays built to help make studying easier, get organized better, and stay on top of all the million things you've got going on.

To help get you started, we’ve compiled a list of the best iPad apps for students to download.

How did these apps make the list? 

We looked at 3 factors when choosing the best iPad apps for students:

  • Price: We only included apps that are within a student budget -- or better yet, free.
  • App Store Rating: All these apps have a ranking of 4/5 stars on the App Store.
  • Usefulness: Which apps will help you get better grades and succeed in school? 

Now without further ado, check out the 9 best iPad Apps for students.

Read more: Check out our guide to Study Strategies.

1. Grammarly

Price: Free
Rating in App Store: 4.4

If you're using your iPad to type your essays, reports, or any of your schoolwork, get Grammarly. It's a free spelling and grammar checker that integrates into a variety of apps, and also comes with a keyboard and browser extension. That means it'll check your writing in real-time and makes sure that at any given moment, your text is typo-free.

It'll also give you suggestions on tone -- for example, it'll identify where you're using passive voice, when you ought to be using active voice.

Things you can do with Grammarly:

  • Proofread your essays or papers (so you don't have to read it over again) 
  • Give you stylistic suggestions on how to sound more confident, professional, or direct
  • Spellcheck as you write

2. Notion

Price: Free
Rating in App Store:

Notion gives you the tools to build your own wiki or dashboard for school. It can be a workspace and a master inventory for your schedule, to-dos, notes.

There is a bit of a learning curve when starting out with Notion. But the good thing is that there are thousands of templates, tutorials, and inspo online that can help inspire how you use Notion.

Things you can do with Notion:

  • Organize your school schedule and calendar
  • Keep track of all your schoolwork, assignments, and exams
  • Bookmark or organize your reading list

3. GoodNotes

Price: Free for first 3 notebooks, then a one-off purchase of $8.99.
Rating in App Store
: 4.8 

If you want to replace all your physical notebooks with digital notes, GoodNotes is the way to go.

GoodNotes lets you create notebooks and organize it in folders. What's more, because it's digital, you can collaborate on documents, search your handwriting, and combine handwritten notes with typed text.

It also comes with several note-taking templates to help you choose the best note-taking method, including Cornell notes.

Things you can do with GoodNotes

  • Take notes and record audio during lectures, then play it back when revising
  • When it's time to study for exams, create flashcards straight from your notes. They can be handwritten or typed text
  • Import textbooks or readings from PDFs to annotate and highlight

P.S. GoodNotes won Apple's very own 2022 iPad App of the Year Award. So of course we had to include it in this best iPad apps for students list.

Read more: Check out our guide to Digital Planner stickers.

4. Forest

Price: $5.99
Rating in App Store
: 4.8

Image from Forest

Looking for a way to stay focused while studying? This is the best iPad app for when its crunch time and you need to stay distraction-free.

Meet Forest, the app that turns time management into a game. 

Plant a tree whenever you need to stay off your iPad, and watch your little seedling grow into a tree as the timer ticks down. But beware: Switch to another app before the timer ends and your tree will wither and die. 

With Forest, you’ll love watching your hard work pay off in the form of a beautiful, lush forest.

Things you can do with Forest: 

  • Launch Forest at the beginning of your study session to stay focussed throughout
  • Launch it when you're in lecture and don't want to get distracted by other apps on your iPad

5. Todoist

Price: Free
Rating in App Store
: 4.8

Image from Todoist

Tired of feeling like college is a chaotic mess, with a never-ending cycle of classes, assignments, and extracurriculars? Todoist is one of the best iPad apps for students to take back control.

This juiced-up to-do list is the ultimate solution for staying on top of your workload. Creating tasks, organizing them into projects, and setting reminders and due dates is straightforward and easy to do.

It even acts as a light project management tool, because you can share projects and tasks with other people.

Things you can do with Todoist:

  • In a group project? Create a shared to-dos board with your group members
  • See all your tasks for a week in the calendar view
  • Download and sync it to your phone or computer to access your to-dos anywhere

6. Libby, by OverDrive

Price: Free
Rating in App Store
: 4.7

College textbooks are heavy, expensive, and last one semester.

If you’re thinking of going digital with your required readings, check out Libby, OverDrive’s e-reading app that connects you to your local library’s collection of ebooks and audiobooks for free. All you need is a library card to sign up (and that’s free too!). 

One thing to note is that you'll be limited by what's available in your local library.

Things you can do with Libby:

  • Replace your heavy books with digital copies on your iPad
  • Borrow instead of purchase books that are required reading

7. Zotero

Price: Free
Rating on App Store
: 4.8

Image from Zotero

Organizing and formatting citations for school papers can be a real headache and a huge time sink. Zotero revolutionizes your research game, organizing and generating citations and bibliographies automatically. 

With support for over 10,000 formats and journal styles, including APA, Chicago, IEEE, and MLA, Zotero is the best iPad app for students to save time when it comes to  citations. 

Zotero also helps you collect and organize all your research for easier retrieval, so you can focus on what really matters: Writing your paper! 

Things you can do with Zotero:

  • Automatically obtain citations as you browse research papers or articles you read online
  • Convert citations from one style to another when it's time to put together your bibliography
  • Share and collaborate on your bibliography for partnered research or projects

8. Bitwarden

Price: Free
Rating on App Store
: 4.7

Image from Bitwarden

As a college student, you’re no stranger to the digital jungle that is higher education.

With a barrage of email accounts, school web software (Moodle, Blackboard Learn, etc.), and other school accounts you’re constantly navigating through numerous usernames and passwords. And nothing kills the momentum of an all-nighter quite like resetting a forgotten password. 

Next time, save yourself the hassle with Bitwarden, a password manager that keeps all your passwords stored safely in one convenient location. It also frees up some valuable brain space for more important things, like acing your exams 😉.

Things you can do with Bitwarden:

  • Store all your university logins in one system so you don't have to worry about forgetting strong passwords
  • Automatically generate new passwords for new websites and accounts

9. Headspace

Price: $69.99/year after 14-day free trial, or $9.99/year with the student plan.
Rating on App Store
: 4.8

Student life can get extremely stressful, especially with managing multiple deadlines, presentations, and exams.

In addition to taking a toll on your health, stress can seriously impact how well you perform at school.

Headspace is a meditation app that can help you calm down and feel in control again. The app is designed to help reduce stress and improve mental wellbeing with guided meditations, sleep sounds, and mindfulness exercises.

With a reasonable student plan, Headspace is truly one of the best iPad apps for students when it comes to wellness, without breaking the bank.

Things you can do with Headspace:

  • If you have trouble falling asleep, play one of Headspace's bedtime meditations to relax
  • Practice meditation everyday, so that you get into the habit of clearing your mind even in the good times
  • When anxiety is getting the better of you during exam season, try a breathing exercise to calm down again

Got more suggestions on the best iPad apps for students?

Tweet us @goodnotesapp to share! 

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Further reading: 

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