Originally Posted: Jan 18, 2018
Last Updated: Jan 22, 2018
Ever found yourself checking Facebook while you study, and then next thing you know your quick five-minute break has turned into a full-fledged 30-minute binge-reading of Game of Thrones theories? Yeah, us too. Sometimes the hardest part about studying for exams as a medical student isn't the actual material; it’s the staying-studying-while-studying part. Lucky for you, we’ve rounded up seven of the best study apps that can help you concentrate on even the most complicated concepts.
Self Control makes it impossible for you to go onto certain websites by blocking them on your computer for a certain amount time. All you do is type the servers onto your “blacklist,” set the period of time you want them to be blocked, and press start.
Nothing is harder than focusing on wordy clinical vignettes than when you’re half asleep. But with Sleep Cycle, there’s no need to worry about this problem. Sleep Cycle tracks your sleeping patterns, then begins to wake you up (during a time period you set) when you are in light sleep, and eventually ends by waking you up at your desired alarm time. It’s sure to improve your sleep habits so you can be more alert when you need to study.
Although it’s pretty self-explanatory, Exam Countdown can make it even easier for you to figure out how many days you have before your next NBME, or even your boards—no counting involved with this app!
Brain.fm comes in the form of a customized soundtrack created to help you stay focused. You tell the app what you’re trying to do, and it creates a soundtrack for you that’s meant to enhance your brain activity. It can even block out distracting noises when you’re trying to study.
Say goodbye to Instagram feed binges, because Focus Timer is here to cut them out! All you have to do is put your phone on its screen, which begins the timer. Then when it’s flipped to the other side, the timer stops. By tracking the amount of time your phone spends face down, Focus Timer shows you the actual amount of time you studied vs. the time you spent checking your phone, keeping a log of your previous study time records. Yes, it is literally watching you—so keep studying!
Although it’s not directly associated with staying focused, Wunderlist is the ultimate list maker/collaborator and can help hold you accountable to your daily study plan. Not sure where in the day to place studying for your Step 2? Wunderlist can help remind you of your tasks and keep them organized at the same time.
Flashback by OnlineMedEd
OnlineMedEd helps medical students retain information through short, concise videos and is seen as a supplement, not a replacement to classroom learning. This learning platform offers customizable learning styles through multiple study formats, plus an app called Flasback featuring over 10,000 flashcards and advanced content with a subscription.
Studying for your COMLEX, Step 2 CK, or even a shelf exam is no joke, so hopefully these apps can make it a little easier. Have any other apps you like to use while you study? Let us know in the comments!